Alaska bans the use of TikTok on state-owned devices

Gov. Mike Dunleavy issued a memorandum Friday prohibiting the use of social media platform TikTok on state-owned devices. In doing so, Alaska follows in the footsteps of more than a dozen other states.

Several predominantly Republican-led states have banned the Chinese-owned social media platform on publicly owned devices, citing national security concerns.

Former President Donald Trump first attempted, unsuccessfully, to ban TikTok in 2020. Several states began banning the use of the app on state-owned devices last year after news broke that the Chinese-owned parent company of TikTok was accessing information on American users. Congress passed legislation last month to ban the use of the social media platform on devices owned by the federal government.

Friday’s memorandum from Dunleavy to state department commissioners and executive staff states that TikTok “poses a clear risk to any network or user it touches.”

“Use of TikTok on state-owned electronic devices or on private devices that are connected to state networks poses a risk that a foreign government may access confidential or private data from state agencies and employees,” Dunleavy said in the memo, explaining his decision to ban the use of the app on state-owned devices or while using the state network.

[TikTok’s addictive anti-aesthetic has already conquered culture]

Despite longstanding concern, TikTok has become an immensely popular social media platform, with 100 million users across the U.S.

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Iris Samuels

Iris Samuels is a reporter for the Anchorage Daily News focusing on state politics. She previously covered Montana for The AP and Report for America and wrote for the Kodiak Daily Mirror. Contact her at isamuels@adn.com.