December 4, 2023

President Donald Trump has agreed to a deal in which Oracle and Walmart take a minority stake in a US company called TikTok Global. ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, says it will have an 80% stake.

Nicolas Economou | NurPhoto | Getty Images

President Joe Biden signed an executive order on Wednesday setting criteria for the government to assess the risk of apps linked to foreign adversaries, a move that has implications for Chinese apps like TikTok and WeChat.

Biden revoked and replaced former President Donald Trump’s three executive orders that were supposed to ban American companies from transactions with TikTok and WeChat. One of the orders also called for a ban on TikTok, which resulted in a lengthy legal process. TikTok remains available and popular in the US

Biden’s new order will direct the Department of Commerce to review apps linked to foreign adversaries and outline what should be considered an “unacceptable risk” according to a White House datasheet. This includes criteria for evaluating transactions with software apps that are tied to a foreign opponent and usually fall under the Committee for Foreign Investment in the US (CFIUS). The order would consider transactions to be “increased risk” if they involve apps owned by individuals who are controlled or managed by individuals who assist foreign military or intelligence agencies, or if the apps collect sensitive personal information, for example.

The order also directs the Department of Commerce to work with other agencies to develop recommendations to protect US consumer data from foreign adversaries. It requires the Department of Commerce to recommend further executive measures and laws to address the risks.

Representatives from TikTok and WeChat owner Tencent did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

This story evolves. Check back for updates.

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