Vincent Yu / AP

Chinese officials are investigating three of the country's largest tech companies, Tencent, Baidu and Sina, for cybersecurity violations, CNBC reports. The government's cybersecurity arm issued a statement that each of the companies' social platform (WeChat, Tieba and Weibo, respectively) gives users an avenue to spread violence, terror, false rumors and obscene imagery that endangers national security and public safety.

Why it matters: We've seem similar crackdowns of social media platforms across the world. In Europe, leaders in France, the U.K. and Germany have all vowed to fine U.S. tech companies, like Google and Facebook, if they failed to remove such content in an orderly fashion. In the U.S., it was just revealed that the FBI was monitoring fake social media accounts that were potentially spreading false information on Election Day.

Go deeper

Appeals court allows House Democrats to continue lawsuit for Don McGahn testimony

Don McGahn in an October 2018 Cabinet meeting. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

A D.C. appeals court on Friday allowed House Democrats to continue their case for testimony from former White House counsel Don McGahn before the House Judiciary Committee.

Why it matters: The ruling has broader implications beyond this specific instance, agreeing that Congress has the standing to sue to enforce subpoenas against executive branch officials even if the White House refuses to comply.

There's little consensus on TikTok's specific national security threat

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

TikTok has become a Rorschach test for how U.S. politicians view China, with little consensus on the specifics of its threat to homeland security.

The big picture: Much of what D.C. fears about TikTok is fear itself, and that's reflected in President Trump's executive order to ban the app by Sept. 20 if it's not sold by parent company ByteDance — alongside another focused on Chinese messaging app WeChat and its parent company Tencent.

U.S. sanctions Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam

Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty Images)

The Treasury Department on Friday placed sanctions on Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam, following months of tension as she has allowed continued overreach by Beijing to subvert Hong Kong's autonomy.

Why it matters: It's the toughest sanction yet imposed on China for its destruction of Hong Kong’s relatively free political system.