On Monday, the Canadian government banned the TikTok app from all of its phones and devices, citing data protection concerns.
A government statement said that starting Tuesday, “the TikTok application will be removed from government-granted mobile devices. Users of these devices will also be prevented from downloading the application in the future.”
The government also added that Canada’s Chief Communications Officer “concluded that (the app) presents an unacceptable level of risk to privacy and security.”
Although there is no evidence of government data breaches associated with the app, the Canadian government has warned that “TikTok’s data collection methods allow widespread access to phone contents.”
Last week, the European Commission banned the application on its devices, after similar steps in the United States.
Fears of data leakage
A TikTok spokesperson was surprised by the Canadian decision to ban the app, saying it was taken “without mentioning any specific security concerns” or consulting with the company.
And the TikTok application, owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, has been under the microscope of the West for months due to concerns about the extent of Beijing’s access to user data.
Relations between China and Canada have deteriorated sharply in recent years, especially after Ottawa arrested, at the request of the US judiciary, a senior official in Huawei in 2018, and China responded to the move by arresting two Canadian citizens.
Tik Tok iStock
Last week, Canada’s Privacy Commissioner opened an investigation targeting TikTok over the collection and use of users’ personal information.