South Jacksonville trustee wants to explore ban on TikTok

A South Jacksonville trustee plans to propose a ban on using the TikTok app on any computer or cellphone used to conduct village business.

Trustee Todd Warrick said he believes the ban is necessary because of national security concerns about the China-based owner of the app, ByteDance. It is one of the items on the agenda for the 6:30 pm Thursday meeting of the Committee of the Whole at Village Hall.

Warrick said scrutiny the app is getting from federal, state and other local governments got his attention and he believes that attention is warranted.

“I can’t speak for the other trustees, they may or may not agree with me, but there are increasing concerns about TikTok and its ability to reach in and access information from users of the app,” Warrick said. “It’s not perfect, but this would be a way to say, ‘Don’t do it.'”

Under his proposal, employees would be required to remove TikTok from their village-issued computers, computer systems and any phone they use to conduct business on behalf of the village, Warrick said.

President Joe Biden signed a bill in late December that prohibits the use of TikTok by the federal government’s nearly 4 million employees on devices owned by its agencies. There are limited exceptions for law enforcement, national security and security research purposes.

CNN reported 35 states have either implemented TikTok bans or now have bills introduced to do so. There have been no similar moves in Illinois.

“I looked into it and TikTok is a Chinese company in Beijing,” Warrick said. “It’s a whole different country over there and, ultimately, the Chinese government owns it.

“I don’t use TikTok anymore. I took it off my phone. I don’t know how much information they steal. Some phones use a retinal scan, and they could end up stealing that, too.”

The meeting is a chance for others to speak up for or against the ban.

“If people want to voice their opinion on this, I’d love to hear it Thursday night,” Warrick said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button