back to article Dems, Repubs eye up ban on chat apps they don't like

On Tuesday a bipartisan group of a dozen US senators introduced a bill to authorize the Commerce Department to ban information and communications technology products and services deemed threats to national security. The Restricting the Emergence of Security Threats that Risk Information and Communications Technology (RESTRICT …

  1. John Tserkezis


    No more TikTok?

    Good riddance.

    1. Graham Cobb Silver badge

      While I am not unhappy if TikTok goes, it is none of the bloody government's business what communications services I choose to use!

  2. Ace2 Silver badge

    Do any of the people up in arms about TikTok understand anything about how Google behaves? They have their tentacles freaking everywhere and it is impossible to avoid them. Yet TT is some sort of “security risk.”

    1. UCAP Silver badge

      But Google is based in the USA, and by definition must therefore be A Good Guy (tm).

    2. rg287 Silver badge

      Do any of the people up in arms about TikTok understand anything about how Google behaves? They have their tentacles freaking everywhere and it is impossible to avoid them. Yet TT is some sort of “security risk.”

      And Twitter. A social platform now run by a Russia-sympathiser who has eliminated any meaningful moderation.

      If I were in the shoes of Congress, I'd be keeping a very close eye on TikTok as a near-term threat, but I'd be treating Twitter as a current threat to democracy as a known and proven vector for foreign influence operations.

      Just because it's owned by an American (in trust for his Saudi & Qatari backers!) doesn't mean squat. There are lots of American domestic terrorists in US penitentiaries. Simply saying "China bad, US fine" is insufficient. And before the downvotes pile in, I'm not calling Musk a terrorist (he's just a sociopath) - just making the point that being US-owned should not be a free pass, or earn you less scrutiny than VK/TikTok. Because the Russkies can use Twitter just as easily as millions of Americans use TikTok.

    3. Binraider Silver badge

      Both of them are security risks; with the key difference being that the NSA undoubtedly has it's hands in Google and thus it's "less" of a risk...

      But find me ANY communication service that can't be tapped.

      Short of using a one-time pad, any and all comms should more or less be considered possible to compromise, with enough effort (and/or working quantum computer BS!)

  3. that one in the corner Silver badge

    Real, imaginary or just protectionism?

    > Before TikTok, however, it was Huawei and ZTE, which threatened our nation's telecommunications networks. And before that[1], it was Russia's Kaspersky Lab, which threatened the security of government and corporate devices.

    Remind me, what precisely was the proof that Kaspersky was doing anything other than keeping their PCs free of viruses and spyware? Not really convinced that the Huawei roadside cabinet is spying on that half of our village, either.

    [1] NB this is *clearly* referring to a time way before the invasion of the Ukraine, if that makes a genuine difference to the demonstrable damage caused by Kaspersky, as opposed to the separate "don't deal with any Russians until they withdraw (at a minimum)" being applied nowadays.

    1. that one in the corner Silver badge

      Re: Real, imaginary or just protectionism?

      > that half of our village

      Not that they'd learn much, other than how to dress up a good scarecrow, put out a nice Britain In Bloom display or whack short sticks together whilst hopping on one leg: this is just a perfectly normal, if somewhat over-dormotoried, English Village.

      OTOH *this* half of The Village has some really odd goings-on (well, we do have both the Scout Hut and the Jam&Jerusalem lot in our half), but we've also just got a plain old BT cabinet, with a rather nice and perfectly normal, if large and strangely damp, balloon nearby.

    2. PhilipN Silver badge

      Re: Real, imaginary or just protectionism?

      Poor form to repeat one of my own posts (as regards Huawei) but I too am thirsting for real evidence.

      “There is, to date, no public evidence of serious technological vulnerabilities in specific Huawei or ZTE equipment.”

      CCDCOE Paper, Tallinn 2019

  4. PhilipN Silver badge

    Dems, Repubs eye up ban on non-US chat apps US tech companies don't like


  5. IGotOut Silver badge

    Is the People's Republic of America.... so stupid / up its own arse, they are missing the massive, gaping,really fucking obvious problem?

    Why are Google and Apple letting this data being collected and sent out in the first place?

    Ah yeah, the broken, corrupt version of capitalism that is how the USA and much of the so called advanced societies like to live by. Everything is OK so long as money is going to the right people, and the right institutions.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "could be used for surveillance or subversion." the fact is - IS used for surveillance or subversion.-

    Ticktock is a spying platform, its what it was made for. They did a great job, people like it, they use it, it works, yes it is bad as in, it is for manipulation and supplies more than they could ask for.

    Yes as others pointed out, google is just as evil, and FB, and nope can't include twitworld, not the data harvest the others are, more of just a noise system.

    Solution to not getting spied on - live like it was the '70's, just live, no computers/internet needed.

  7. Sceptic Tank Silver badge


    I've never watched anything on TokTok. But if it's only half as bad as the stuff on YouTube then I pity the CCP fool who has to monitor all that crap. Was watching this man, badly in need of a haircut, getting seriously agitated on YouTube over some Graham Hancock Netflix show. That man was not happy. I was just thankful that I could go and watch something else after sitting though just one video. Not sure what message you bring for mankind if your channel consists of swearing vilely the whole time while you evaluate someone else's work.

  8. Groo The Wanderer Silver badge

    "We only want you using communications tools that are subject to US search warrants and spyware, which you should be Willing To Accept as Good Americans and Peons. Foreign tools we have no control over are therefore banned. By the way, you WILL use our backdoor-crippled encryption schemes..." :(

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