Two Republican state representatives are asking Gov. Roy Cooper to issue an executive order targeting TikTok. A Dec. 28 letter to Cooper seeks an executive order banning the popular social media platform from government devices.
“We respectfully urge your administration to issue an executive order that bans TikTok from all government devices in North Carolina,” wrote Rep. Jason Saine, R-Lincoln, and Rep. Jon Hardister, R-Guilford.
Saine, senior chairman of the state House’s budget-writing Appropriations Committee, also chairs the Information Technology Oversight Committee. Hardister serves as House majority whip and chairs the House committee dealing with university education.
“This is a matter of national security, and it is imperative that action be taken swiftly and decisively,” Saine and Hardister wrote. “As we know, the Chinese government is constantly working to infiltrate our communications and access intellectual data within the United States. If sensitive data is breached, it could pose both an economic and a security threat for North Carolina. We have a responsibility to prevent this from happening, which is why we are urging an executive order to be issued as soon as possible.”
“Several other states have taken this action, and we recently learned that the Chief Administration Officer of the United States Congress banned TikTok from devices that are used by staff on Capitol Hill,” the letter continued. “It is time for North Carolina to follow suit and do what is necessary to promote state and national security.”
“If there is no executive order, we will work swiftly in the upcoming 2023 legislative session to advance legislation to ban TikTok on all government-issued devices in North Carolina,” Saine and Hardister wrote. “However, it is our hope that your office will take swift and immediate action to address this matter in the interest of enhancing our domestic security and protecting our citizens.”
The General Assembly returns to Raleigh Jan. 11.