The ban follows several similar decisions by the parliaments of the European Union, the United States and Canada.
The United Kingdom has now banned its ministers from using the Chinese app TikTok to prevent security and data breaches as rumors about TikTok’s data security continue to spread across the EU, USA and Canada.
The ban comes after the British government fears that TikTok could potentially steal sensitive data from government-issued devices used by ministers for their work.
Fears and speculation about the social media application being used to steal private data began after it was revealed that the Chinese government owns shares in ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok.
Speaking about the ban, UK Cabinet Minister Oliver Dowden said it was a “precautionary measure” that should come into effect immediately.
TikTok has so far denied all allegations of its relationship with the Chinese government and has said it respects user data and does not share it with the Chinese government.
TikTok’s vice president of government relations and public policy in Europe called the ban a geopolitical move, saying the move was “more about geopolitics than anything else.”
“We have asked people to decide on facts and not on their fears,” he added.
The Chinese embassy in London made similar remarks, calling the move “political rather than factual”.
The embassy added that the decision would “undermine the confidence of the international community in the UK’s business environment.”
About a few months ago, when rumors of TikTok’s ties to the Chinese government began, the company sent out a message saying that the decisions the government was considering were based on “fundamental misunderstandings.”
TikTok added, “We are committed to working with the government to address any concerns but decisions must be made based on facts and our competitors must be treated equally.”