Amazon Tells Employees to Delete TikTok from Cellphones: Report

Amazon told employees to delete the TikTok app from any devices that access Amazon email, according to a report. But Amazon now says the message was sent in error.
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Amazon.com  (AMZN) - Get Report has reportedly told its employees to delete TikTok, the popular Chinese social-media platform, from their cellphones due to "security risks."

The Seattle retail and tech company told its employees in an email that they must delete the app from any devices that “access Amazon email,” according to The New York Times, which obtained a copy of the email. 

In an update to the original story, however, the New York Times reporter said that  Amazon now says the email was sent mistakenly 

Employees had to remove the app by Friday to remain able to obtain mobile access to their Amazon email, the original note said, but were still allowed to view TikTok from their laptop browser.

Amazon did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

"While Amazon did not communicate to us before sending their email, and we still do not understand their concerns, we welcome a dialogue so we can address any issues they may have and enable their team to continue participating in our community." TikTok said in a statement. "We're proud that tens of millions of Americans turn to TikTok for entertainment, inspiration, and connection, including many of the Amazon employees and contractors who have been on the frontlines of this pandemic."

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said this week that the White House may bar TikTok, which is owned by Bytedance, out of concerns that China’s government will use TikTok as a tool to spy and spew propaganda.

Americans should be careful about using TikTok to avoid having their private information fall "in the hands of the Chinese Communist Party,” Pompeo said.

A ban on TikTok would mean less competition for U.S. social-media platforms, including Snap’s  (SNAP) - Get Report Snapchat and Facebook  (FB) - Get Report, Morgan Stanley’s sales team wrote in a commentary cited by CNBC.

In addition, TikTok sad it would stop operating its app in Hong Kong after China passed a restrictive new law governing the city. 

Last month, the Indian government banned TikTok and dozens of other Chinese mobile apps over alleged security issues. The ban comes at a time when both countries are involved in a renewed border dispute.

Shares of Amazon, the online retail giant, at last check were up 0.6% to $3,200.