The proposed takeover of TikTok’s U.S. operations by Walmart and Oracle has been reportedly pushed back indefinitely by the Biden administration, as President Joe Biden reviews the efforts taken by the previous administration to address the potential security risks presented by Chinese tech companies.
The former Trump administration had allegedly cited concerns of national security when it started targeting TikTok, arguing that personal data of TikTok users across the U.S. could be accessed by the Chinese government, an allegation TikTok has vehemently denied time and again.
The Biden administration’s decision comes at a time when TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, has found itself in a legal battle with the United States government, with several federal courts banning the U.S. commerce department’s attempt to close down all operations of TikTok in the US.
According to sources privy to the matte, high level discussions between ByteDance representatives and U.S. officials of national security have continued with no end or conclusion in sight as of yet. Recently, during a press conference, Jen Psaki, the new White House press secretary stated that the Biden administration is reviewing all probable threats to American data. However, she also stated that a ‘new proactive step’ regarding the TikTok sale has not been taken yet.
ByteDance, and TikTok by extension, have been holding talks with both Oracle and Walmart since September of 2020 to finalize an acceptable deal, which would have seen the shifting of TikTok’s U.S. assets within a new entity so as to prevent the app from being banned completely in the country.
The social media app, which boasts of over 100 million active users within the U.S., encompasses a relatively simple user interface, various special effects and background music options that help users make short entertaining videos.