The ban comes a few weeks after the US Defence Department identified the app as "having potential security risks associated with its use".
The app, which allows users to post and share short videos, is owned by ByteDance, a Chinese company.
"The Department of Defense generally does not provide policy on individual social media platforms, but routinely issues guidance to proactively address existing and emerging threats", he said. Recall that the U.S. and China have been at loggerheads over multiple issues. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, asked US intelligence officials to investigate whether TikTok represents a national security risk to the United States.
"Security experts have voiced concerns that China's vague patchwork of intelligence, national security, and cybersecurity laws compel Chinese companies to support and cooperate with intelligence work controlled by the Chinese Communist Party", the letter stated.
The army, which until recently used the app in its recruitment efforts, is the second branch of the American armed forces, after the navy, to ban it. One of the central fears that has given rise to these concerns is the fact that China may be able to gain access to American users' personal data using the app, thereby compromising national security. The company added that it stores its United States user data in the U.S. (with a backup in Singapore), so it is not subject to Chinese law. "Further, we have a dedicated technical team focused on adhering to robust cybersecurity policies, and data privacy and security practices".
Pappas also maintains that TikTok's US-based team moderates content for their adherence to USA policies, and that content that violates the app's rules, such as pornography, spam or violence, is removed.