Why some big Texas universities are blocking TikTok entry on online networks

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(AUSTIN, Texas) — A host of important Texas universities announced right away that they have banned TikTok from federal government-issued equipment and restricted accessibility to the social media app on their world wide web networks.

The University of Texas at Austin, one particular of the nation’s premier faculty campuses, claimed on Tuesday that it has banned TikTok from its networks and started to take away the China-owned application from governing administration-issued products above fears about information privateness.

The transfer aims to bring the campus into compliance with a directive from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott very last thirty day period that called on state agencies to reduce the cybersecurity hazards posed by TikTok, Jeff Nyland, adviser to the president for technology technique, mentioned in a concept to college students.

“The college is taking these significant measures to get rid of dangers to information contained in the university’s community and to our crucial infrastructure,” Nyland stated.

The University of Texas at Dallas, a different campus, claimed in a message to students on Tuesday that it began removing TikTok from university-owned units last thirty day period and would acquire the supplemental phase of blocking obtain to TikTok on its Wi-Fi network.

An additional important Texas-dependent university, Texas A&M, told ABC Information on Wednesday that it has taken very similar ways to limit obtain to TikTok. The university has blocked accessibility to the social media app on condition-owned products and is in the procedure of proscribing entry to the application on its Wi-Fi network, a spokesperson reported.

TikTok has faced developing scrutiny from condition and federal officials in excess of fears that American details could drop into the possession of the Chinese government.

A lot more than fifty percent of U.S. states have taken steps toward a partial or full ban of TikTok on authorities units.

The Biden administration and TikTok wrote up a preliminary arrangement to address countrywide protection worries posed by the application but obstacles keep on being in the negotiations, The New York Times described in September.

TikTok states that it merchants the facts of U.S. buyers outside the house of China, and has never taken out U.S. posts from the system at the request of the Chinese government.

In a assertion in response to a ban from Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan last month, TikTok advised ABC Information: “We consider the concerns driving these decisions are mostly fueled by misinformation about our company. We are delighted to carry on owning constructive meetings with condition policymakers to examine our privateness and stability methods. We are let down that quite a few condition businesses, workplaces, and universities will no extended be capable to use TikTok to create communities and connect with constituents.”

The latest information tales have referred to as into dilemma the safety of consumer data.

Buzzfeed described in June that TikTok engineers centered in China received entry to personal facts on U.S. customers, this sort of as cellular phone figures. Forbes reported in October that ByteDance, TikTok’s father or mother organization, supposed to use the application to obtain information on some customers.

The Trump administration experimented with to ban TikTok in 2020, finally contacting on ByteDance to sell the app to a U.S. company. Having said that, the sale never ever took area.

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