Gov. Abbott announces plan to ban TikTok on state devices
DALLAS — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced Monday a statewide plan to ban TikTok on state-issued devices.
“Texans, especially our state agencies and employees, must be protected from having sensitive information shared with the Chinese Communist Party,” he wrote on Twitter. “We cannot ignore this security threat.”
The model plan, released with Monday’s announcement, outlined objectives “to protect Texas’ sensitive information and critical infrastructure from potential threats,” including banning TikTok and preventing the download of the app (and other prohibited technologies) on state-issued devices, such as cell phones, laptops, and tablets.
It also calls to prohibit employees or contractors from conducting state business on devices with TikTok or the other banned technology.
The Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Department of Information Resources developed a plan for state agencies on managing personal and state-issued devices used to conduct state business. Each agency will have until Feb. 15 to implement its own policy to enforce this statewide plan.
This announcement comes about a month after he ordered state agencies to ban the use of TikTok on government-issued devices.
Multiple Texas colleges and universities responded by ordering employees to immediately remove TikTok from all state-issued devices. They later blocked students on campus Wi-Fi from accessing the app.
Shortly after those calls to action, members of the U.S. Congress introduced legislation to ban TikTok across the nation, citing concerns the Chinese government is gaining access to critical information through the app. The bill’s sponsors said the new legislation would seek to protect Americans from foreign adversaries who might try to use TikTok to gather sensitive data.