Dec 28, 2019

WSJ: TikTok wants to move out of China

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, is weighing its options for building TikTok's global headquarters outside of China, the Wall Street Journal (subscription) reports.

The big picture: The video-sharing app is likely trying to distance itself from its Chinese ownership amid concerns around its user data and possible censorship on issues deemed off-limits by the Chinese Communist Party.

Catch up quick: Singapore, Dublin, and London are potential cities on TikTok's shortlist, per the WSJ. No U.S. cities are currently under consideration.

What they're saying: One person told the WSJ that TikTok's move outside of China has been internally discussed for months, but the initiative is “only accelerating because of the things happening in the U.S."

Flashback: TikTok apologized in November for temporarily deleting a viral post that compared China's mass detention of Uighur Muslims to the Holocaust. TikTok cited a "human moderation error."

Go deeper: TikTok is China's next big weapon

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Army bans TikTok from government-owned phones

Photo: Chesnot/Getty Images

The Army has banned its soldiers from using TikTok on government-owned phones, calling the Chinese-owned video app a cyber threat, reports Military.com.

Why it matters: The move, coupled with the Navy's similar decision earlier this month, highlights how seriously the military and government are taking TikTok's potential national security implications.

Go deeperArrowDec 31, 2019

TikTok expands content rules, cracks down on misinformation

Photo: Chesnot/Getty Images

TikTok on Wednesday published a lengthy update to its rules of conduct, sharpening its definition of unacceptable content and its stance toward misinformation.

Why it matters: The move is an acknowledgment that TikTok's previous standards did not adequately address the onslaught of content-related issues that the video-sharing platform is starting to face as it grows.

Go deeperArrowJan 8, 2020

Report details TikTok security vulnerabilities in 2019

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

TikTok patched multiple holes in its security at the end of 2019 that had left the video sharing app's accounts, videos and user information potentially exposed for most of the year, as detailed in a new report from cybersecurity research firm CheckPoint.

Why it matters: No personal data was found to be compromised, but this report provides some of the first in-depth details of security risks faced by TikTok — which is under the microscope as lawmakers criticize its Chinese ownership.

Go deeperArrowJan 8, 2020