West Bend, WI – County Executive Josh Schoemann announced today that TikTok, the social media app, is banned on Washington County government devices.

In discussions with United States Representative Mike Gallagher of Wisconsin’s 8th Congressional District and incoming Chair of the Select Committee on China, Schoemann learned of the serious issues the TikTok app presents to our national security. Rep. Gallagher has led the effort to inform the public and urge a ban on TikTok use by government agencies. He introduced a bill last week banning TikTok nationally, and the US Senate voted unanimously to ban the app from all US Government devices. 

There is a risk of TikTok being used as spyware by the Chinese Communist Party that surveils American citizens, censors and controls news content, and promotes Communist Party propaganda.

Noting these dangers, “what initially seemed to be a fun, innocent social media entertainment we now know is an insidious, deceptive tool that is being weaponized by the Chinese Communist Party,” said Schoemann. “The continued use of TikTok is clearly a potential threat to our security and will not be allowed on our devices here in Washington County.”

Rep. Gallagher said, “TikTok is a trojan horse that gives the Chinese Communist Party access to your data and the ability to track your location and monitor your keystrokes. It’s common sense to prevent this spyware from being downloaded onto to government phones, and I commend County Executive Schoemann for taking this step to better protect Wisconsinites. I hope more County Executives, as well as Governor Evers, follow this example and ensure no government device has TikTok on their phone.”

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