TikTok, on Monday, filed a lawsuit against US President Donald Trump over his executive order banning transactions in the United States using the popular short video sharing app, describing the order as an excuse to fuel anti-China rhetoric as he seeks reelection.
TikTok and its company ByteDance rejected the White House’s position on the application as a threat to national security, saying that they had taken “extraordinary measures to protect the privacy and security of TikTok user data in the United States.”
The two companies described Trump’s call in his Executive Order on August 6 to ban TikTok as a way to continue his “purportedly broader campaign of anti-China rhetoric” ahead of the US presidential election on November 3, as Trump seeks a second term.
“We don’t take government litigation lightly,” Tik Tok said in a blog post. “But with the threat of the executive order to impose a ban on our operations in the United States … we simply have no other choice.”
The company and ByteDance are seeking a permanent injunction to prevent Trump from carrying out his August 6 order. The lawsuit filed in Los Angeles mentioned the names of the defendants: Trump and US Commerce Secretary (Wilbur Ross).
Amid the growing distrust between Washington and Beijing, Trump has complained for weeks that TikTok poses a threat to national security as he may share information about users with the Chinese government. Its executive order issued on August 6 called for a ban on transactions with the app after 45 days.
Trump issued a separate executive order on August 14 giving ByteDance 90 days to dispose of US TikTok operations and any data the company collected in the US. Reuters reported last week that TikTok was preparing for a legal challenge.
ByteDance acquired the Shanghai-based video app Musical.ly in a $ 1 billion deal in 2017 and then relaunched it as TikTok the following year.
The company said: The Trump administration violated its constitutional right to follow due process by banning the company without notice. She accused Trump of misusing the International Economic Emergency Powers Act, which allows the president to regulate international trade during a national emergency.
In May 2019, Trump relied on this law to stop the alleged efforts of foreign telecom companies to conduct economic and industrial espionage against the United States.
The Trump administration said: Americans should be careful in using TikTok, as according to a Chinese law introduced in 2017 under President (Xi Jinping), Chinese companies are obligated to support and cooperate in Chinese national intelligence work.
But the company said: Trump’s decision on August 6 was not motivated by real national security concerns or supported by the state of emergency he declared a year ago. She described the decision as “a gross misappropriation of the authority of the International Economic Emergency Powers Act and an excuse to promote the President’s broader campaign of anti-China rhetoric in the run-up to the US elections.”
ByteDance is in talks to sell the company’s North America, Australia and New Zealand operations to companies including: Microsoft and Oracle. And he said Insiders: These assets could be between $ 25 billion and $ 30 billion.