OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Governor Kevin Stitt issued an executive order Thursday banning TikTok for state government agencies, employees and contractors on government networks or on government-issued devices, including state-issued cellphones, computers, or any other device capable of internet connectivity.
The Governor’s office says Executive Order 2022-33 is in response to ongoing national and cybersecurity threats created by TikTok, owned by Chinese company ByteDance, and dissemination of users information within the Chinese Communist Party.
“Maintaining the cybersecurity of state government is necessary to continue to serve and protect Oklahoma citizens and we will not participate in helping the Chinese Communist Party gain access to government information,” said Governor Stitt.
TikTok Chief Operating Officer Vanessa Pappas, based in Los Angeles, has said the company protects all American users’ data and that Chinese government officials have no access to it.
The executive order follows several other states that have already banned the app from government agencies.
Earlier this week, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced an emergency cybersecurity directive banning the use of TikTok and certain China and Russia-based platforms in the state’s executive branch of government.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Wednesday instructed state agencies to ban employee use of TikTok.
Governors from South Dakota, South Carolina, and Nebraska have all issued similar orders.
Federal Communications Commissioner, Brendan Carr and FBI Director Christopher Wray have sounded the alarm over the app, saying it is a national security risk.
The U.S. armed forces also have prohibited the app on military devices.