Just a day ago, we reported that Chinese owned apps TikTok and WeChat would be banned in the U.S. app stores by September 20. At the time, it was reported that that decision may be reversed but that it was unlikely.
"The Department of Commerce today announced prohibitions on transactions relating to mobile applications WeChat and TikTok to safeguard the national security of the United States," had said the Department of Commerce in its official statement.
Now, it seems the decision has been reversed at least for TikTok. On Saturday, U.S. President Donald Trump said he approved of a new deal made by TikTok, Walmart, and Oracle.
According to the BBC, Trump said the new agreement would ensure the data of the estimated 100 million Americans who use the app was safe, "The security will be 100%," he said.
"I have given the deal my blessing. I approve the deal in concept."
Trump had ordered the app to be banned in the country due to national security concerns as there were fears that data collected from U.S. citizens by TikTok's servers may be handed to the Chinese government. TikTok's owner, ByteDance, denied that its data was accessible to China's Communist Party.
It seems Trump finally believes the firm. However, the ban on WeChat still remains and the Chinese-owned messaging and payments app will no longer be available in the U.S, app stores effective from Sunday night. Tencent, WeChat's owner, said the ban was "unfortunate".
TikTok and ByteDance are now waiting for their new U.S. deal to be signed off by the Chinese government. TikTok added that the agreement would guarantee U.S. national security requirements were fully met. ByteDance added that it was working on a proposal to reach an agreement that was "in line with U.S. and Chinese law" as soon as possible.
UPDATE Sept. 21, 4:00 AM EDT: ByteDance announced it won't be transferring its tech and algorithms to Oracle servers
ByteDance noted that the agreement doesn't rule them to share these things, instead, the company will allow Oracle to check their source code.
A CNBC translation notes that the company statement states: “The current plan does not involve the transfer of any algorithms and technologies. Oracle has the authority to check the source code of TikTok USA,”
Allowing the inspection of the source code of online affairs is a common data security practice.