Amazon bans TikTok but reverses course quickly

Amazon on Friday banned employes from having the Chinese-owned TikTok app on their devices but quickly lifted the ban, according to Reuters.

The cause of the ban remains unclear, but a source told Reuters that Amazon executives were unaware of the ban and never requested it. Once TikTok became aware of the ban, it spoke with representatives from Amazon and had the ban lifted.

While this may have all been a mistake, the timing is notable. Recently, UScSecretary of State Mike Pompeo said the US is looking into banning TikTok due to it being owned by China-based tech company ByteDance and the privacy and security issues that come with that.

When asked about whether he thinks it’s OK for Americans to use TikTok, Pompeo doubled down, saying, “Only if you want your private information in the hands of the Chinese Communist Party.”

On top of the US looking into a nationwide ban, various companies within the US have banned the app on corporate-owned devices, including Wells Fargo last week. The Navy also banned the app, but it got a head start on everyone else, as its ban went into effect in 2019.

While personal TikTok use should be banned on nearly all corporate-owned devices based solely on it being a personal app and not business-related, the fact that companies are calling it out specifically is alarming for the booming social media app.

What’s more, all this chatter about businesses banning it puts a serious damper on its recent announcement of TikTok for Business.