WASHINGTON • The Trump administration will take steps to ensure that the Chinese government does not gain any access to the private information of American citizens through telecommunications and social media, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said, when asked if the United States was planning to ban Chinese-owned app TikTok.
Mr Pompeo also praised US technology giants Google, Twitter and Facebook for “refusing to surrender” user data to the Hong Kong government.
He urged other companies to follow suit, after China’s establishment of a sweeping new national security law for the semi-autonomous city.
Speaking two days after he said that Washington was “certainly looking at” banning Chinese social media apps, including TikTok, Mr Pompeo on Wednesday said the US evaluation was not focused on a particular company, but was a matter of national security.
“The comments that I made about a particular company earlier this week fall in the context of us evaluating the threat from the Chinese Communist Party,” Mr Pompeo said.
He added that Washington was working to ensure that Beijing does not gain access to any private data or health records of Americans.
“So what you’ll see the administration do is take actions that preserve and protect that information, and deny the Chinese Communist Party access to private information that belongs to Americans,” he said.