A new report claims that officials have said that the ban on new US downloads of TikTok can still be lifted by President Donald Trump before it takes effect late on Sunday when TikTok owner ByteDance runs to reach an agreement on the fate of its US operations.
The Commerce Department’s order will “de-platform” the two apps in the U.S. and prevent Apple Inc.’s app store, Alphabet Inc.’s Google Play and others from offering the apps on any platform “accessible from the U.S.” told a senior official trading partner Reuters.
The order does not block transactions with WeChat owner Tencent Holdings’ other businesses, including its online gaming business and will not ban Apple, Google or others from offering TikTok or WeChat apps anywhere outside the US.
Officials spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity because the announcement had not yet been made public.
The order will not prohibit US companies from conducting business on WeChat outside the US, which will be welcome news for US companies such as Walmart and Starbucks that use WeChat̵
The bans are in response to a couple of executive orders issued by Trump on August 6 that gave the Department of Commerce 45 days to decide which transactions to block from the apps he considered a national security threat. The deadline expires on Sunday.
Ministry of Commerce officials said they took the extraordinary step because of the risk posed by the app’s data collection. China and its companies have denied US user data collected for espionage.
In a statement to Reuters, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross said “we have taken important steps to combat China’s malicious collection of US citizens’ personal data, while promoting our national values, democratic rule-based norms and aggressive enforcement of US laws and regulations.”
The order is set to be published at 08.45 EDT (1245 GMT) on Friday, officials said.
The Department of Commerce will not seek to force people in the United States to remove the apps or stop using them, but will not allow updates or new downloads. “We aim for a top company level. We will not go after the individual users,“said a tradesman.
Over time, officials said, the lack of updates will impair the app’s usability.
a senior official told Reuters that “the expectation is that people will find alternative ways to do these actions. We expect the market to act, and there will be safer apps that will fill these gaps that Americans can trust, and that the US government avoid taking similar action against. “For more, read the full Reuters report.
Our coverage of this story began in December 2019
Dec 22: TikTok is suspected of being a spy tool for the Chinese government as the US Navy bans it as a cyber security threat
Jan 9: The latest security flaw found in the TikTok app supports the government’s belief that the app is a national security threat
July 31: US President Trump can announce that TikTok must be sold to a US company, and the odds are that it may be …
August 3: Microsoft confirms that an agreement for TikTok will be completed by September 15
August 8: At the moment, the order banning TikTok and WeChat in the US App Store should not be a problem for Apple
September 13: TikTok has chosen Oracle’s Deal in hopes of avoiding a sale that could be blocked by the Trump administration
September 14: With the deadline of September 20 Fast Approaching, TikTok gives a Last Minute proposal in hopes of avoiding a total ban