March 29, 2023

How Can the US Force TikTok to Sell?

Source: The Hill

Journalist: Ines Kagubare

Hannah Kelley, a research assistant in the technology and national security program at the Center for a New American Security, said that ByteDance is unlikely to divest and succumb to Biden’s request.

“Biden’s recent ultimatum shows that no proposed mitigation strategies under the CFIUS review process have proven sufficient in satisfying U.S. government concerns, including the long-awaited Project Texas,” Kelley said.

Project Texas is a plan devised by TikTok to address some of the security concerns raised by the U.S. government. Under the project, American data would be routed and stored with Oracle, a Texas-based software company.

...

If a forced sale proves difficult to carry out, experts said the government could find other ways to make it difficult for TikTok to operate within the U.S.

Kelley said the bipartisan RESTRICT Act could do just that. The legislation, introduced by Senate lawmakers earlier this month, would give the federal government more power to regulate or ban technology tied to foreign adversaries such as TikTok.

Under the bill, the Commerce Department would identify and mitigate risks posed by technology linked to foreign adversaries, including China, North Korea, Iran, Russia, Cuba and Venezuela.

Kelley said that the legislation “offers a clean legal authority to address problematic products and services like TikTok from a range of countries of concern.”

“It provides both the framework to address TikTok directly and a broader authority to look beyond this one issue and actor,” she added.

Read the full story and more from The Hill.

Authors

  • Hannah Kelley

    Research Associate, Technology and National Security Program

    Hannah Kelley is a Research Associate with the Technology and National Security Program at CNAS. Her work focuses on U.S. national technology strategy and international cooper...