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Aurora bans TikTok from city-owned devices

The ban comes amid warnings from political leaders about security breaches and possible Chinese surveillance.

AURORA, Colo. — Aurora City Council members voted 9-to-1 Monday night to ban TikTok from being downloaded to city-owned devices.

The ban also extended to personal devices that access city networks. The resolution bans any websites or apps developed by ByteDance, which is the parent company of TikTok.

TikTok has come under fire in the U.S., Europe and Asia-Pacific, where a growing number of governments have banned the app from devices used for official business over worries it poses risks to cybersecurity and data privacy or could be used to push pro-Beijing narratives and misinformation.

So far, there is no evidence to suggest this has happened or that TikTok has turned over user data to the Chinese government, as some of its critics have argued it would do.

Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colorado, last month called on tech giants Apple and Google to remove TikTok from their app stores immediately, saying the app is "an unacceptable threat" to U.S. national security.

Also last month, U.S. Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colorado, debuted legislation to ban TikTok nationwide. He introduced the No TikTok on the United States Devices Act with Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Missouri. Buck said using TikTok allows the Chinese Communist Party to "gain an alarming level of access to users' phones."

Congress banned the app from all federal government devices last year. More than two dozen state governments have done the same, according to Bennet.

Last week, U.S. lawmakers grilled TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew during hearings about the app. He assured lawmakers that the platform has never turned over user data to the Chinese government and wouldn’t do so if asked. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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