China can use TikTok as ‘propaganda’ tool, ‘absolutely’ should be banned, Sen. Warner says
Chinese social media app TikTok should ‘absolutely’ be banned in the U.S. as the platform’s potential to spread China’s propaganda and steal Americans’ data remains a national security concern, Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said Sunday.
Warner, a Senate Intelligence Committee chair, appeared on ABC’s ‘This Week’ and said that the U.S. ‘should be concerned’ about its relationship with China because the two countries are in ‘enormous competition’ with each other.
‘National security is not simply about guns and ships and tanks anymore,’ Warner said. ‘It’s about technology competition.’
The Virginia senator said that 100 million Americans use TikTok for an average of 90 minutes per day, adding that their data is ‘residing in China no matter what TikTok says.’
‘TikTok can be used as a propaganda mechanism for the Community Party of China,’ Warner said. ‘That, I believe, is a national security concern.’
While Warner said he believed the app, which is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, should ‘absolutely’ be banned in the U.S., the platform should not be singled out as more foreign technology will emerge in the future.
‘What we need, though, is a rules-based approach that doesn’t simply single out a single application because it was Huawei, the Chinese telecom company earlier, TikTok today, there will be other technology applications.’
Meanwhile, TikTok is continuing its campaign to convince Western countries that it is not funneling users’ data to the Chinese government.
TikTok recently hired the corporate and political consulting firm, SKDK, which worked for President Biden’s campaign in 2020, according to reports.
Fox News’ Timothy H.J. Nerozzi and Greg Wehner contributed to this report.