TikTok faces scrutiny in Australia after India and US raise question on data security

WION Web Team Sydney, Australia Jul 20, 2020, 03.09 PM(IST)

File photo of TikTok Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

The company opened an office in Australia in the recent weeks.

Hard days for the video-sharing app TikTok are not coming to an end. After India banned the app and the US is looking at a possible ban, Australia too has expressed concern over app's safety issues.

TikTok is owned by a Chinese company called ByteDance and has been alleged of sharing customer data with the Chinese government.

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The company opened an office in Australia in the recent weeks. After the new office was established, offices of both the Home Affairs and Attorney-General are discussing TikTok's operations, the sources said.

Talking about how the government is strictly looking at the privacy issues, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, "If we consider there is a need to take further action than we are taking now, then I can tell you we won`t be shy about it."

This scrutiny has come after Labor Senator Jenny McAllister urged the government to look into the app's data-sharing app noting that noting 1.6 million young Australians used the app. "Some of these approaches to moderating content might be inconsistent with Australian values," she said in a local radio interview.

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"For example, removing material about Tiananmen Square, or deprioritising material about Hong Kong protests," she added, referring to student protests in Beijing in 1989 and pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong over the past year.

However, TikTok Australia's General Manager Lee Hunter has written to the Australian government assuring that the company will cooperate, but also raised concern that the app was "being used as a political football".