Multiple media sites have recently reported that US President Trump is eyeing banning the wildly popular video app TikTok from operating in the United States (US). The said app is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance.
“As far as TikTok is concerned we’re banning them from the United States,” Trump has reportedly told the reporters aboard Air Force One.
Following this, Microsoft has quickly come into the picture as a potential buyer of TikTok’s US operations. And the news has been confirmed by the company itself just this August 2, 2020, via their Official Microsoft Blog.
According to Microsoft, since they appreciate the importance of addressing the President’s concerns, they are committed to acquiring TikTok to subject it to a complete security review.
Microsoft will move quickly to pursue its discussion with TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, about the potential TikTok purchase in the US. And the said discussion is to be completed on or before September 15, 2020.
The discussion between Microsoft and ByteDance will build upon a notification to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).
If the TikTok service in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are be owned by Microsoft, here are what to be expected:
- World-class security, privacy, and digital safety protections will be added.
- The operating model for the service would be built to ensure transparency to users and appropriate security oversight by governments in these countries.
- Microsoft would ensure that all private data of TikTok’s American users is transferred to and remains in the United States.
- Microsoft would ensure that this data is deleted from servers outside the country after it is transferred.
Note however that the discussions are preliminary. According to Microsoft, there is still no assurance that a transaction will proceed.