FILE PHOTO: TikTok logos are seen on smartphones in front of a displayed ByteDance logo in this illustration taken November 27, 2019. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo
NEW YORK (Reuters) – The United States is preparing to take action against China’s ByteDance over concerns that its ownership of TikTok jeopardizes the security of the personal data that the popular short video app handles, according to people familiar with the matter.
It was not immediately clear whether the U.S. government would ask ByteDance to shed TikTok outright or make other changes to its ownership. However, an announcement could come as early as Friday, the sources said, requesting anonymity because the matter is confidential.
ByteDance and the U.S. Treasury Department, which chairs the government panel that has been reviewing ByteDance’s ownership of TikTok, declined to comment.
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said on Wednesday that TikTok was under a national security review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States and that he would be making a recommendation to President Donald Trump this week.
Reporting by Echo Wang in New York and Alexandra Alper and David Shepardson in Washington, D.C.; editing by Diane Craft