In context: Just lately launched statements from TikTok staff reveal that Chinese language staff repeatedly and improperly accessed nonpublic U.S. consumer information. Regardless of earlier claims that Tiktok consumer information was secured and managed by a “US-based safety crew,” the social media big has been discovered to have improperly accessed consumer information on a number of events and was suspected of presumably leaking info on to the Chinese language authorities. Now, a TikTok government has supplied congress with a letter explaining how the corporate will shield the data from ByteDance and home it in an Oracle information heart within the U.S.
The letter from TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew was despatched to 9 U.S. senators to elucidate how the corporate will maintain all info saved in U.S. based mostly Oracle information facilities. The information could be periodically audited by a U.S.-based safety crew.
Chew acknowledged that the transfer was a part of the social media firm’s bigger method to reinforce information safety often called Venture Texas. Chew additionally minced no phrases within the letter, acknowledging that TikTok is likely one of the “…most scrutinized platforms from a safety standpoint, and we goal to take away any doubt in regards to the safety of U.S. consumer information.”
The observe up letter from TikTok was supplied in response to inquiries from Marsha Blackburn, John Thune, and a number of other different U.S. senators who questioned the corporate and their information practices. Their questions have been submitted following a report from BuzzFeed on ByteDance’s information safety practices (and flaws). The response from TikTok denies any wrongdoing on the corporate’s behalf, stating that the accusations and insinuations within the BuzzFeed article have been incorrect and never supported by information.
Chew’s letter goes on to debate information controls and reiterated the corporate’s intent to delete all U.S. consumer information from its present servers as soon as the Oracle transition is full. Nonetheless, he was additionally clear that ByteDance staff in China would nonetheless work on TikTok, growing algorithms designed to feed personalised suggestions to the platform’s customers. He additionally acknowledged that particular movies and feedback would stay open to Chinese language staff, however solely underneath authorized authorities situations.
On Friday, Senator Blackburn mentioned that Mr. Chew’s letter proved that fears in regards to the Chinese language Communist Get together’s affect on the corporate have been effectively based. “The Chinese language-run firm ought to have come clear from the beginning, however it tried to shroud its work in secrecy,” she mentioned, including that TikTok wanted to testify earlier than Congress once more.