Oct 24, 2019 - World

Bipartisan senators request national security investigation into TikTok

Chuck Schumer and Tom Cotton

Chuck Schumer (left) and Tom Cotton (right). Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) asked U.S. intelligence officials on Wednesday to determine whether TikTok, a Chinese social media app that has seen a massive spike in popularity among young people, poses any "national security risks," the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: The app already has more than 110 million downloads in the United States alone, and could become a Chinese vacuum for coveted American data as tensions between the countries continue to escalate.

Details: In a letter sent to acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire, the senators questioned TikTok's data collection practices and whether the app adheres to censorship rules imposed by the Chinese government.

  • Schumer and Cotton believe the app could be a target for "foreign influence campaigns" like those carried out in the 2016 election.

The big picture: This is the second congressional request to investigate TikTok. Earlier this month, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) asked the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to review a 2017 deal allowing TikTok to expand into the U.S. market.

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