TikTok banned on US and Canada government-issued devices

The White House has ordered all US federal agencies to remove the Chinese-owned video-sharing application TikTok from government-issued devices within 30 days.

Concerns are growing in the US over possible data leaks to China through TikTok.

The order issued on Monday follows Congress's passage in December of legislation banning the app on federal devices.

A US government official described the ban as a critical step forward in addressing the risks presented by the app.

Canada followed suit. Also on Monday, its Treasury Board issued a statement banning the use of the TikTok app on government-issued mobile devices.

The board said from February 28, the app will be removed from such devices and their users will be blocked from downloading it in the future.

The statement explained that TikTok presents an unacceptable level of risk to privacy and security.

In an e-mail to Canada's public broadcaster CBC, TikTok expressed disappointment that the Canadian government blocked the app without citing any specific security concerns or contacting the company to discuss any concerns prior to making the decision.

Caution against TikTok has also been spreading in Europe. The European Commission last week imposed a similar ban on the use of the Chinese app on government work devices.