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TikTok Hits Back at US Senators’ Accusations, Says Not Influenced by China

Hitting back at the US over accusations of censoring content to appease Beijing, Chinese short-video making platform TikTok has said it does not censor content critical of the Chinese government, and that none of its operations are subject to the Chinese law.

Over the past several weeks, TikTok, owned by Beijing-based Bytedance, has been at the centre of public statements by Members of the US Congress and others regarding alleged censorship of content, as well as their data protection practices.

“Let us be very clear: TikTok does not remove content based on sensitivities related to China. We have never been asked by the Chinese government to remove any content and we would not do so if asked. Period. Our US moderation team, which is led out of California, reviews content for adherence to our US policies — just like other US companies in our space,” the company wrote in a blog post on Friday.

US Senators such as Chuck Schumer and Tom Cotton wrote a letter earlier this week to the US intelligence officials asking that they investigate TikTok for possible national security threats.

Talking about data privacy and security, TikTok added: “We store all TikTok US user data in the US, with backup redundancy in Singapore. Our data centres are located entirely outside of China, and none of our data is subject to Chinese law.”

The company noted it has a dedicated technical team focused on adhering to robust cybersecurity policies, and data privacy and security practices.

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