Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin bans TikTok, WeChat on state networks and tech

Republican Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin signed an executive order banning TikTok and WeChat from being used in state government technology.

Youngkin signed the executive order Friday and said the applications posed a clear threat to national security.

“TikTok and WeChat data are conduits to the Chinese Communist Party, and their continued existence poses a threat to national security, the intelligence community, and the personal privacy of every American,” Youngkin said. “We’re taking this step today to protect state government equipment and wireless networks from infiltration threats and to ensure we protect state government data and network security.”

Specifically, the order prohibits TikTok, WeChat, and any products made by ByteDance Ltd. or Tencent Holdings Ltd. from being used on state government equipment and state-run wireless networks.

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On February 3, 2022, Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin hosted a roundtable with parents and two of the secretaries at a Safeway grocery store in Alexandria, Virginia. (Photo by Robb Hill for The Washington Post via Getty Images/Getty Images)

The order also requires contractors working with the state to “prohibit the use of these applications on state-owned equipment or IT infrastructure.”

State employees who have installed TikTok, WeChat or any other product made by ByteDance Ltd. or Tencent Holdings Ltd. on government equipment have been told to uninstall the apps by Dec. 12. 31.

Virginia joins several other states, including New Hampshire, Alabama, Idaho, Utah and Georgia, in taking similar action against TikTok and other Chinese companies.

Senate passes bill to ban TikTok on government devices

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Berlin, January 21, 2022: On the screen of a smartphone you can see the icon of the application TikTok. (Photo: Fabian Sommer/dpa (Photo: Fabian Sommer/picture alliance via Getty Images)/Getty Images)

fbi director christofrey Said in December. 2 In the University of Michigan presentation, Chinese officials have broad access to TikTok, allowing them to “manipulate content and, if they choose, use it for influence operations.”

“All of these things are in the hands of an administration that doesn’t share our values ​​and that has a mission that is so different from America’s best interests. That should concern us,” Wray said.

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FBI Director Christopher Wray testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee on March 10, 2022 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kevin Deitch/Getty Images/Getty Images)

However, at a Senate hearing in September, Douyin chief Operations officer Vanessa Pappas tried to refute the claim that the company shared user data.

“We’ll never share data, period,” Pappas said.

Fox News’ Lawrence Richard and Leah Crawley contributed to this report.

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