Amazon Backtracks From Demand That Employees Delete TikTok
Amazon on Friday asked its employees to delete the Chinese-owned video app TikTok from their cellphones, putting the tech giant at the center of growing suspicion and paranoia about the app.
Almost five hours later, Amazon reversed course, saying the email to workers was sent in error.
In the initial email, which was obtained by The New York Times, Amazon officials said that because of “security risks,” employees must delete the app from any devices that “access Amazon email.” Employees had to remove the app by Friday to remain able to obtain mobile access to their Amazon email, the note said.
In a statement sent later on Friday, company spokeswoman Kristin Brown said, “There is no change to our policies right now with regard to TikTok.”
But by then, the initial email had already added to the storm surrounding TikTok, which has been popular with young audiences in the United States for its short, fun videos and is owned by the Chinese tech company ByteDance. Because of its Chinese ownership and heightened tensions between the United States and China over issues such as trade and technology dominance, TikTok has come under increasing scrutiny in Washington over its security.
Mike Pompeo, the secretary of state, said on Monday that the Trump administration was considering blocking some Chinese apps, which he has called a threat to national security. Many users who have built community and business on TikTok are fearful of a broad ban. Some Amazon employees publicly shared dismay at not being able to use the app.https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/10/technology/tiktok-amazon-security-risk.html