BISMARCK, N.D. – Gov. Doug Burgum today signed an executive order banning the social media app TikTok from state-owned devices issued by executive branch agencies, citing growing national security concerns.
The order specifically prohibits executive branch agencies and their employees from visiting the TikTok website or downloading the app on any government-issued equipment or while connected to the state network. It also directs North Dakota Information Technology, the state’s IT department, to implement controls to enforce the ban and to assist partner entities that use the state network if they need help protecting and securing their equipment and employees.
“Protecting citizens’ data is our top priority, and our IT professionals have determined, in consultation with federal officials, that TikTok raises multiple flags in terms of the amount of data it collects and how that data may be shared with and used by the Chinese government,” Burgum said. “Reducing this security risk is the right thing to do, and we would offer NDIT’s support to assist and advise any partner entities that wish to pursue similar measures.”
As noted in the order, the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation recently said the bureau has “national security concerns” about TikTok operations in the United States, warning the Chinese government could use the app to influence users or control their devices.