(San Francisco) A former manager of Byte Dance in the US is suing his former employer, TikTok’s parent company, alleging that he fired him after he raised the alarm about the company’s illegal practices.
Several US elected officials want to ban TikTok in the US. They claim the popular platform allows Beijing to collect user data and influence their opinion without their knowledge, something the app has always denied.
According to the lawsuit filed in San Francisco court on 1R May, Yintao Yu, shortly after being hired in California in the summer of 2017, discovered that ByteDance was “stealing” videos posted on rival networks Instagram and Snapchat to place on its own services.
Mr. who was the head of engineering for Bite Dance in the United States. Yu would later warn his superiors, in vain, that “intellectual property theft continued unabated”. He was fired in November 2018.
On Friday, the plaintiff filed an amended lawsuit alleging that Bite Dance acts as a “propaganda tool of the Chinese Communist Party” (CCP).
Mr. Trump said he saw Byte Dance highlighting content that “expressed hatred of Japan” and censoring content that “expressed support for pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong”. Yu says.
After all, according to the former employee, CCP “had permanent peak access to all company data, including data stored in the US”.
“My client is the most senior Bite Dance official to speak publicly,” his attorney, Charles Jung, said Saturday.
“My client is concerned about the security of US user data, the app’s ethical conduct, and the well-being of Byte Dance employees.”
Access to US users’ personal information has been a source of growing tension over the years between authorities and the company, which has taken steps to ensure that this data is stored on servers in the US.
At the end of March, during a congressional hearing, TikTok’s head, Show Chew, reiterated that Beijing had no access. But many elected officials responded that they didn’t believe him.
The White House recently pushed for TikTok to be bought by an American company so it can stay in America.
ByteDance and TikTok did not immediately respond to AFP’s request.
Mr. Yu is seeking a court injunction in which he plans to pay a “substantial portion” to civil rights organizations for Asian Americans.