January 23, 2023

Congress, TikTok, and Securing Democracy in the Digital Age

In recent weeks, Congress has asserted itself in the TikTok debate by passing legislation that bans the app from federal government devices. Another bipartisan bill, known as the ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act, would go much further by completely prohibiting TikTok from operating in the United States. With these actions, Congress is taking on more responsibility in deciding the short-form video sharing service’s future. Given the potentially massive impact of whether the app is allowed to continue operating in the U.S., Congress’s engagement and action in this matter are welcome and necessary to help steer—at a critical moment—the direction of the still-evolving U.S. technology strategy toward China.

A review of TikTok would also allow Congress to ask questions about and signal positions on some deeply important yet not often debated questions stemming from the separation of America’s tech ecosystem from China’s.

Since late 2019, TikTok has been under a secretive national security investigation conducted by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States. Known as CFIUS, the executive branch committee reviews the national security implications of foreign transactions with U.S. entities and recommends how to address those concerns to the president. For example, in December 2016, President Obama, acting on CFIUS’s recommendation, prohibited a Chinese-owned company’s purchase of a U.S. manufacturer of technology used in U.S. weapons systems.

Read the full article from Lawfare.

  • Reports
    • June 11, 2024
    Catalyzing Crisis

    Executive Summary The arrival of ChatGPT in November 2022 initiated both great excitement and fear around the world about the potential and risks of artificial intelligence (A...

    By Bill Drexel & Caleb Withers

  • Commentary
    • Just Security
    • June 6, 2024
    Open Source AI: The Overlooked National Security Imperative

    Now a global technological superpower, China does not want to repeat the mistakes of its past and is actively positioning itself to be the world’s AI leader....

    By Keegan McBride

  • Commentary
    • The Washington Post
    • May 30, 2024
    To Win the Chip War, the U.S. Must Prioritize Revolutionary Research

    Taking big bets on moonshot technologies is the only approach that can sustain Moore’s law and guarantee that the United States continues to lead in the technologies of tomorr...

    By Jordan Schneider, Arrian Ebrahimi & Chris Miller

  • Reports
    • May 28, 2024
    The Quest for Qubits

    Executive Summary The United Nations General Assembly recently declared 2025 the International Year of Quantum Science and Technology.1 Quantum information science, a field on...

    By Sam Howell

View All Reports View All Articles & Multimedia