Washington. U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said Wednesday she supports legislation that would give the Commerce Department new tools to address security concerns related to foreign orders owned by adversaries.
His comments come as concerns about Chinese-owned TikTok have sparked new efforts in Congress to increase powers or potentially ban the popular short-video sharing app, bills that have stalled in Congress.
TikTok, which has more than 150 million users in the United States, denies that it is improperly using US data.
“There’s no question that TikTok poses national security risks, but we need a comprehensive plan,” Raimondo said in an appearance before the Senate Commerce Committee.
Raimondo said commerce needs new legal tools from Congress “to have a comprehensive approach to these connected applications that pose national security risks.”
TikTok did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In March, the head of the FBI said TikTok could be used by the Chinese government to control the data of millions of American users, alleging that the Chinese-owned video app had security issues.
TikTok said it has spent more than $1.5 billion on aggressive data security efforts and denies the spying allegations.
Raimondo supported legislation introduced by Senators Mark Warner, John Thune and 24 other senators in March, called the Restraint Act, which would authorize the Commerce Department to review or block a series of transactions related to foreign information and communications technologies that pose national security risks. . Like Tik Tok.
He also said he supports a similar bill being drafted by Sen. Maria Cantwell, called the Guard Act.
“I’m often asked if we should ban TikTok. This is bigger than TikTok,” Raimondo said.
Separately, Raimondo said he hopes to send out the first announcements of chip funding awards from the government’s $39 billion semiconductor subsidy program this fall.
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