President Trump has told reporters he’s planning to ban TikTok from operating in the US. “As far as TikTok is concerned, we’re banning them from the United States,” Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One on Friday night. Bloomberg reports that Trump indicated he’s ready to sign a document to order the ban as early as today, either via an executive order or emergency economic powers.
“I will sign the document tomorrow,” said Trump on Friday night, indicating that a ban could take effect “essentially immediately.”
The threat of a TikTok ban has been lingering since Secretary of State Mike Pompeo mentioned the possibility on July 7th, saying it was “something we’re looking at.” TikTok is a subsidiary of Beijing-based ByteDance, and critics have called out its privacy practices and potential ties to the Chinese government. Pompeo also compared TikTok to Huawei and ZTE, two Chinese companies that have been designated as threats to US national security.
The US government is conducting a national security review of TikTok and is preparing to make a policy recommendation to Donald Trump, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters this week at the White House.