TikTok will be removed from US app stores from midnight on Sunday as Washington implements executive orders from President Donald Trump that also target WeChat, a Chinese social media app.
The Department of Commerce said it would bar people in the US from downloading the messaging and video-sharing apps through any app store on any platform.
In a press release on Friday, September 18, the department stated: ‘In response to President Trump’s Executive Orders signed August 6, 2020, the Department of Commerce (Commerce) today announced prohibitions on transactions relating to mobile applications (apps) WeChat and TikTok to safeguard the national security of the United States. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has demonstrated the means and motives to use these apps to threaten the national security, foreign policy, and the economy of the U.S. Today’s announced prohibitions when combined, protect users in the U.S. by eliminating access to these applications and significantly reducing their functionality
The Trump administration says the companies threaten national security and could pass user data to China.
WeChat will effectively shut down in the US on September 20, but people will still be able to use TikTok until 12 November, when it could also be fully banned
The following transactions will be prohibited:
Any provision of service to distribute or maintain the WeChat or TikTok mobile applications, constituent code, or application updates through an online mobile application store in the U.S.
Any provision of services through the WeChat mobile application for the purpose of transferring funds or processing payments within the U.S.