Iowa and North Dakota have joined seven other states in banning employees from having TikTok on state-owned devices, bringing the total to nine states where the app is banned from being used in such a manner.
Federal authorities have committed to stymieing the video application over concerns of data harvesting and threats to national security at the hands of the Chinese Communist Party, as reported by TimCast.
Both gubernatorial offices of Iowa and North Dakota announced the ban on state-owned devices on Dec. 13, 2022.
Effective immediately, Governor Kim Reynolds of Iowa announced her directive to the Iowa Department of Management’s Office of the Chief Information Officer, issuing a ban on TikTok on all state devices and furthermore, prohibiting any state agencies from subscribing to or owning a TikTok account.
“It is clear that TikTok represents a national security risk to our country and I refuse to subject the citizens of Iowa to that risk,” said Gov. Reynolds on the ban.
“They trust us with their personal and confidential information and we will take every step possible to protect it, including from the Chinese government,” the governor stated.
The office of the governor of North Dakota issued its ban by way of executive order. Governor Doug Burgum’s ban forbids TikTok from state-owned devices that are issued by executive branch agencies over “growing national security concerns.”
Executive branch agencies and employees in North Dakota are prohibited from visiting TikTok’s website or downloading the app on any government-provided equipment. The ban also extends to the scope of the state’s internet servers, prohibiting the use of TikTok when connected to state networks.
The state’s IT department is advised to enforce the ban and assist any state partners in securing their equipment.
“Protecting citizens’ data is our top priority, and our IT professionals have determined, in consultation with federal officials, that TikTok raises multiple flags in terms of the amount of data it collects and how that data may be shared with and used by the Chinese government,” Governor Burgum said in his statement.
Concerns and cries continue to mount over TikTok’s invasive policies, with even Democrats echoing the viewpoints once brought forward by Donald Trump.
“I think Donald Trump was right,” said Democratic Sen. Mark Warner (Va.), chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, in November 2022. “It is a massive collector of information, oftentimes of our children,” he continued.
Similar bans of the app are in place in Alabama, Maryland, Nebraska, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, and Utah.