TikTok, the Chinese-owned video app, mentioned on Friday that it was transferring the entire knowledge produced by its American customers through servers managed by Oracle, the Silicon Valley firm, in a bid to persuade the U.S. authorities that it won’t expose the non-public info of Americans to the Chinese authorities.
But TikTok added that it would nonetheless retailer its personal backups of that info, doubtlessly complicating these efforts.
The app, which is owned by the Chinese firm ByteDance, mentioned in a blog post that it anticipated to finally delete American customers’ “private data from our own data centers and fully pivot to Oracle cloud servers located” within the United States. It didn’t say when that may happen.
“For more than a year, we’ve been working with Oracle on several measures as part of our commercial relationship to better safeguard our app, systems, and the security of U.S. user data,” Albert Calamug, who works for TikTok’s public coverage division, mentioned within the submit.
The video app made its announcement earlier than BuzzFeed News published an article detailing how TikTok staff felt it was troublesome to efficiently wall off its knowledge from China. According to recordings the information outlet mentioned it had obtained, TikTok staff mentioned Chinese engineers had entry to American knowledge as lately as this yr.
“As we’ve publicly stated, we’ve brought in world class internal and external security experts to help us strengthen our data security efforts,” TikTok mentioned in a press release. The firm added that it had created a unit in May, led from the United States, to “provide a greater level of focus and governance” on Americans’ knowledge safety.
In 2020, President Donald J. Trump ordered ByteDance to promote TikTok over considerations it may expose the non-public info of Americans to Beijing. While the White House was mentioned to have reached a deal to promote a part of the app to Oracle and others, it by no means got here to fruition. The Biden administration has continued scrutinizing TikTok and different alternatives for Chinese firms to manage American knowledge.
A White House spokeswoman didn’t reply to a request for remark. A spokesman for the Treasury Department, which is a member of the committee that vets overseas funding within the United States, declined to remark. Oracle additionally declined to remark.