The European Commission informed all its officials yesterday that they have until March 15 to remove TikTok of their corporate mobiles, or even those for personal use but with official apps. A decision that has not fallen in favor in the popular video application, who did not hesitate to attack the executive arm of the European Union.
In fact, from TikTok they have not only accused him of not communicating to notify the reason for the decision. They also criticized him for dealing with the situation in an “un-European” way. This was stated by Theo Bertram, vice president of European public policies of the app to Bloomberg.
According to the aforementioned, the decision of the European Commission took TikTok by surprise. Although the platform commented yesterday that they had contacted the agency to explain how they protect the data of European users, this time the words have been in a much more critical tone.
Bertram assured that in the ByteDance video app they found out about the decision through the press, and not by direct communication with officials of the European Union. “Normally, we would expect some kind of interaction and then some ability to understand what the case is against us, and its respective evidence, to address it. And, in this case, we haven’t had any of that,” she accused.
TikTok comes to the crossroads of the veto imposed by the European Commission
The European Commission’s decision to ban the use of TikTok on mobile phones for official use is not too surprising. The video platform is under heavy scrutiny in the United States and the European Union due to espionage allegations that have surfaced in recent months.
In North America, TikTok can no longer be used on phones belonging to government areas or agencies. While several universities have already blocked access from devices connected to their WiFi networks. However, the story does not end there. Recently, a senator sent a letter to Apple and Google to remove it from the App Store and Play Store, respectively.
In Europe, concern about the registration and manipulation of user data has also grown in recent months. It is a fact that ByteDance employees in China can access the information of citizens of the United Kingdom, Switzerland and the European Union who use TikTok. Although the European Commission warned at the end of 2022 that there were multiple investigations aimed at elucidating whether the social network was violating the GDPR.
In fact, recently the CEO of TikTok, Shou Zi Chew, met with European officials in Brussels to address issues related to the privacy of the app. His visit came after Thierry Breton, Commissioner for the Internal Market and Services, said in January that the app had to comply with the rules if it didn’t want to be blocked.
The ban on TikTok on the mobile phones of European Commission employees is further evidence of the tense relationship between the parties. “We were never given the impression that this was something that was being considered. Not to mention that the process feels un-European,” Theo Bertram argued in recent hours.
For now, the options of the viral videos app do not seem to be too many. The company wants to take advantage of the deadline until March 15 to obtain more information and try to elucidate some hypothetical solution to the blockade.