Access and Feeds

Governance: TikTok to Route US Data Through Oracle

By Dick Weisinger

TikTok has been criticized for exposing US user data to the Chinese government. The Trump administration had tried to break off US operations into an independent entity that would not allow data access from China.

History of the Oracle/TikTok deal:

  • August 2020 – Trump administration threatens TikTok because of potential spying on US data by China.
  • September 2020 – Trump administration suggests a deal where TikTok US operations would be sold to Oracle and Walmart.
  • June 2021 – Biden administration reinitiates investigation into TikTok’s handling of US data.
  • March 2022 – Oracle takes over the storage of TikTok’s US private data, like phone numbers and birthdays.
  • June 2022 – TikTok changes the “default storage location of US user data with 100% of user traffic being routed to Oracle Cloud infrastructure.”

Albert Calamug, manager of U.S. Public Policy at TikTok, wrote that “we know we are among the most scrutinized platforms from a security standpoint, and we aim to remove any doubt about the security of US user data. We’re dedicated to earning and maintaining the trust of our community and will continue to work every day to protect our platform and provide a safe, welcoming, and enjoyable experience for our community.”

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