Newsroom /

Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: TikTok COO Says They Won’t Stop Sending Your Data to China.

COO Vanessa Pappas Appeared Before the Senate Homeland Security Committee.

Photo for: Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: TikTok COO Says They Won’t Stop Sending Your Data to China.

Here’s your weekly reminder to delete TikTok.

On Wednesday, TikTok’s Chief Operating Officer Vanessa Pappas testified before the Senate Homeland Security Committee about security concerns relating to the Chinese social media platform. Reps from Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Apple were also on the hill for questioning.

One back and forth between Pappas and the committee is particularly concerning.

“Will TikTok commit to cutting off all data and data flows to China, China-based TikTok employees, ByteDance employees, or any other party in China that might have the capability to access information on US users?” asked Senator Rob Portman (R-OH).

Before we get to Pappas’ non-answer, a quick reminder about how TikTok handles user data.

Excerpt from a Drill Down article last month:

“TikTok, the Chinese-owned video app, said…that it was moving all of the data produced by its American users through servers controlled by Oracle, the Silicon Valley company, in a bid to convince the U.S. government that it will not expose the personal information of Americans to the Chinese government,” the New York Times reports.

But there is a very. big. catch.

“TikTok added that it would still store its own backups of that information, potentially complicating those efforts.”

So what did Pappas say? Very little. She wouldn’t commit to cutting off data flows, only saying that negotiations with the U.S. government “will satisfy all national security concerns.”

Pappas also said that while TikTok has an office in China, they do not operate there. And that may technically be true, but Breitbart draws attention to the dangerous catch:

“However, Chinese national security law dictates that all companies located there must cooperate with data requests from the government. This has resulted in TikTok facing questioning in the U.S. after an American communications regulator called on Apple and Google to ban the app over ‘national security’ concerns This is related to the possibility that U.S. user data could be transferred to the Chinese government and used to undermine U.S. interests.”

The only scenario that will “satisfy all national security concerns” would be to sever ties with China completely and stop compromising the data of American citizens.