Wells Fargo asks employees to delete Chinese-origin TikTok App from smartphones due to data leak fears
The data leak fears through TikTok App are present and real. San Fransisco based financial behemoth has deemed that the popular TikTok app is a high data security risk and has asked its employees to delete the app from their phones. Wills Fargo happens to be the second company after Amazon to ask its employees to delete TikTok though Amazon later recanted on its decision.
India has already issued a notification banning 59 Chinese origin Apps including TikTok for data security and privacy fears. The United States government is also seriously contemplating banning TikTok in America according to the Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo.
TikTok is a Chinese origin App developed by ByteDance and took the world by storm in recent months. It is very popular amongst youngsters who use the platform to upload short burst videos with sound effects. However, TikTok has been under scanner from FTC, the Dutch privacy watchdog, and two other agencies for children’s data security concerns. In fact, the US Department of Justice has already asked FTC to probe into the facts on whether TikTok has failed to delete videos and sensitive information related to children below 13 and younger living in the United States- as it was required as per the agreement made in 2019 with FTC.
Many countries including the U.S. and India have accused ByteDance and TikTok App of collecting data and sharing it with the Chinese government, although no tangible proof has been found. However, longstanding legislation in China grants the CCP extensive power of access to private-sector data generated by companies in their country.
Wells Fargo spokesperson confirmed that the company had asked employees to delete TikTok App. “A small number of employees with corporate-owned devices who had installed the TikTok application,” The spokesperson said. “Due to concerns about TikTok’s privacy and security controls and practices, and because corporate-owned devices should be used for company business only, we have directed those employees to remove the app from their devices.”
A few days ago, Amazon sent an internal memo saying pretty much the same thing, only to backtrack a few hours later, saying that it has been sent by mistake.
When asked about the latest Wells Fargo diktat to its employees to remove TikTok, the TikTok stated that “Tens of millions of Americans, including Wells Fargo employees, come to TikTok for entertainment, inspiration, and connection, especially during the pandemic. Our hope is that whatever concerns Wells Fargo can be answered through transparent dialogue so that their employees can continue to participate in and benefit from our community.”