Two senators have sent a letter to TikTok’s CEO accusing the company of making misleading claims to Congress about the way it stores and handles US users’ data, Business Times reports. Senators are demanding the platform answer more than a dozen questions by the end of this week.
“We are deeply troubled by TikTok’s recurring pattern of providing misleading, inaccurate or false information to Congress and its users in the US, including in response to us during oversight hearings and letters,”
the senators wrote.
The letter from Senators Richard Blumenthal and Marsha Blackburn draws attention to how sensitive data about US users may be stored in China and how officials there may have access to it.
Recent reports by The New York Times and Forbes raise questions about statements made during testimony before Congress in March by Shaw Chu, TikTok’s CEO, and during an October 2021 hearing that included Michael Beckerman, TikTok’s head of public policy for the Americas. TikTok is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance.
“We are reviewing the letter. We remain confident in the accuracy of our testimony and responses to Congress.”
said Alex Haurek, a spokesperson for TikTok.
The entertainment platform has been working for years to convince the U.S. government that it can separate its U.S. operations and ring-fence U.S. users’ data amid concerns that the company could provide that information to Chinese authorities.
Stay tuned for details.