VIENNA (Reuters) – Austria will join the growing list of countries banning Chinese-owned video-sharing app TikTok from government employees’ work phones, Interior Minister Gerhard Karner said on Wednesday.
Various Western countries including Britain, the United States and several other European Union member states have already barred TikTok over security concerns. The EU’s two biggest policymaking institutions also banned the app in March.
“It will be banned from work mobile phones. On private phones outside the state network it will of course be possible (to use the app),” Karner told reporters before a weekly cabinet meeting when asked if politicians in government would be able to keep using the app.
TikTok, which is owned by Chinese firm ByteDance, is under scrutiny from governments and regulators because of concerns that China’s government could use the app to harvest users’ data or advance its interests.
(Reporting by Francois Murphy; Editing by Christina Fincher)