TikTok challenges Montana ban with lawsuit, seeking its reversal. Legal action initiated to protect TikTok’s presence in Montana
Social media company TikTok Inc. documented a claim Monday looking to upset Montana’s first-in-the-country prohibition on the video sharing application, contending the law is an illegal infringement of free discourse privileges and depends on “unwarranted hypothesis” that the Chinese government could get to clients’ information.
ByteDance, a Chinese tech company, owns TikTok, which follows a lawsuit filed by five content creators last week. Similar arguments were made by them, including the assertion that the state of Montana lacks the authority to act on matters pertaining to national security. Missoula federal court served as the venue for both lawsuits.
On Wednesday, Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte signed the bill, and hours later, the content creators filed a lawsuit. The law is supposed to go into effect on January 1, but cybersecurity experts say that it might be hard to keep it in place.
According to the lawsuit, TikTok claims that it has taken measures to safeguard the security and privacy of its users, including storing all U.S. user data in the United States, and that it has not and will not share U.S. user data with the Chinese government.
A few legislators, the FBI and authorities at different organizations are worried that the video-sharing application could be utilized to permit the Chinese government to get to data on U.S. residents or push favorable to Beijing deception that could impact people in general.
Chinese regulation constrains Chinese organizations to impart information to the public authority for anything that reasons it considers to include public safety. TikTok says this has never occurred.
Emily Flower, a spokesperson for the Montana Department of Justice, stated in a statement, “The Chinese Communist Party is using TikTok as a tool to spy on Americans by collecting personal information, keystrokes, and even the locations of its users. By extension, people without TikTok who affiliate with users may have information about themselves shared without even knowing it.”
She wrote, “We expected legal challenges and are fully prepared to defend the law that helps protect Montanans’ privacy and security.” The use of TikTok on government-owned devices has been banned by the federal government and about half of the states in the United States, including Montana.
The state of Montana now prohibits TikTok downloads. It would impose a daily penalty of $10,000 on any “entity,” such as an app store or TikTok, for each time a person “is offered the ability” to access the social media platform or download the app. The punishments wouldn’t matter to clients.
Since 2020, when then-President Donald Trump attempted to prohibit the company from operating in the United States through an executive order that was halted by federal courts, there has been talk of a ban on TikTok. Due to security concerns, Congress has also considered banning the app.
Source – Newsandsentinel