Prime Minister Scott Morrison has ruled out any Australian ban of TikTok, but has still urged Australians to exercise caution when using the app.
With India having banned the app last month, Morrison was recently quoted saying it was “right for people to have an increased awareness of where these platforms originate and the risks they present”.
And while some had suggested Australia might enforce a similar ban in the coming months, Morrison seemed to rule out the option while speaking to the Aspen Security Forum.
“There’s nothing at this point that would suggest to us that security interests are being compromised, or Australian citizens are being compromised,” he said, according to the ABC.
“We’ll obviously keep watching them, but there’s no evidence to suggest to us today that [a ban] is a step that is necessary.”
TikTok will continue to be scrutinised by the Australian government under two complementary investigations into the app, currently being conducted by the Federal Government.
TikTok Australia has responded to the Prime Minister’s announcement, saying it maintains focused on building a safe ecosystem.
“TikTok has become a much-loved platform for Australians to express themselves, find entertainment and connect in a fun, safe environment and this news will be welcomed by our passionate community,” a company spokesperson told B&T.
“We remain committed to providing a safe and secure platform for people to bring joy and creators to build successful and meaningful careers. We look forward to seeing our positive and creative community continue to grow.”
It follows a recent advertising campaign in Australia from TikTok, which suggested the app was being turned into a “political football“.
Morrison’s decision to rule out a ban on TikTok comes days after it was revealed Microsoft was in talks with ByteDance (TikTok’s parent company) to acquire the app in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
The outcome of these talks is expected to be revealed next month.
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