Earlier this month, US president Donald Trump signed an executive order effectively banning TikTok in the US from September 20. A couple of days after that, TikTok said that it would sue the US government in order to fight the executive order. Well, the company has today filed a lawsuit against the federal government to challenge the ban.
In its lawsuit, TikTok alleges that the executive order has been signed “without any evidence to justify such an extreme action, and without any due process.” The company is also highlighting that it was given no time to address the concerns raised by the US government. As such, due process wasn’t followed, says TikTok.
In a statement (via Engadget), TikTok wrote “With the Executive Order threatening to bring a ban on our US operations – eliminating the creation of 10,000 American jobs and irreparably harming the millions of Americans who turn to this app for entertainment, connection, and legitimate livelihoods that are vital especially during the pandemic – we simply have no choice.”
The company is claiming that it spent almost a year working in good faith with the US agencies to give them all the requested details and information. However, TikTok says that ultimately all information that pointed towards TikTok not being a security threat was simply ignored by the US government.
TikTok is trying to prove that it’s not a national security threat to the United States. It is saying that it has worked with US agencies to do so. Moreover, it is pointing out that all its key personnel are US citizens residing in the US. Also, TikTok stores data in US servers, and not in China. Plus, it has software barriers in place to keep TikTok user data separate from other ByteDance products.
All of those things are TikTok’s defences against the US calling it a security threat. However, the US government seems bent on forcing TikTok to sell off its US operations to Microsoft or Oracle. It remains to be seen how the courts rule in this case and whether TikTok manages to get a stay on the executive order at least.