HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) – Concerns over TikTok’s potential impact on national security came to a head on Capitol Hill, as Shou Zi Chew, CEO of TikTok, appeared before lawmakers.
Eyewitness News heard from a Kentucky lawmaker and a local business to get the perspective from both sides in the TikTok debate in the Tri-State.
“We utilize Facebook, we have a website, and we utilize Instagram as well. And though we are seeing good results, TikTok is actually working a little better for us.,” says Lauri Miller, manager of Evansville business Pawn 2 Cash.
But at Thursday’s hearing on Capitol Hill, Kentucky lawmakers including Rep. Brett Guthrie, grilled the TikTok CEO about its Chinese ‘sister-version’, and the parent company ByteDance.
One Congresswoman went as far as to say TikTok was an attempt by the Chinese to steal American data.
Some of these concerns may be overblown, according to a southern Indiana security analyst.
“(TikTok) eventually end up getting a data deal with oracle, the tech giant, so we can now safely assume that 100% of the us TikTok traffic is being routed through oracle, alleviating many of the national security concerns associated with TikTok,” says Noelle Chubb, a security analyst.
Supporters of TikTok are also in Washington touting the “good” the social media giant is doing for American society.
“You really shouldn’t be trusting it any more than you trust Facebook and Twitter, or any other social media platform, because they all sell your data, and they are all trying to use that as their main product,” adds Chubb.