Donald Trump plans to ban popular Chinese video app TikTok in the US
Donald Trump has announced he will ban the popular Chinese-owned social media app TikTok in the US.
The US president said the video-sharing platform could be gone as early as Saturday if he signs an executive order.
He was returning to Washington on Air Force One after a fundraising trip to Florida when he announced the ‘severance’.
Trump told reporters on Friday: “As far as TikTok is concerned we’re banning them from the United States.
“Well, I have that authority. I can do it with an executive order or that [emergency economic powers].”
TikTok has up to 100 million users in the US alone, but US security officials have expressed concern that the app could be used to collect personal data from Americans and be passed onto the Chinese government.
But TikTok, which is owned by Chinese firm ByteDance, has denied accusations.
A spokesperson for the app told NBC News that TikTok is a job creator in the US.
The spokesperson said in a statement: "We've hired nearly 1,000 people to our US team this year alone, and are proud to be hiring another 10,000 employees into great paying jobs across the US.
"Our $1 billion creator fund supports US creators who are building livelihoods from our platform.
"TikTok US user data is stored in the US, with strict controls on employee access.
“TikTok's biggest investors come from the US. We are committed to protecting our users' privacy and safety as we continue working to bring joy to families and meaningful careers to those who create on our platform.”
On Friday it emerged that Microsoft were in talks to buy the app from ByteDance, but Trump has cast doubt over the deal going through.
It comes after reports had claimed that Trump was set to order ByteDance to give up ownership of the app.