For two years, TikTok has been in confidential talks with the administration's review panel, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, or-

CFIUS, to address questions about ByteDance's relationship with the Chinese government and whether that link could put the sensitive data of 100 million U.S. users into the hands of Beijing officials.  

The company assumed that those talks would reach a resolution soon after it submitted a 90-page proposal to the administration in August.

UNDER the proposal, called Project Texas, TikTok would remain owned by ByteDance. But it would take a number of steps that it said would prevent Beijing from having  access to data on U.S. users and offer the U.S. government oversight of the platform. Some of these steps have been taken since October.

The company has proposed putting all user data into domestic servers owned and operated by Oracle, the American software giant.

The Data would not be allowed to be transferred outside the United States, nor would it be accessible to ByteDance or TikTok employees outside the country.

THE PROGRAM proposes having CFIUS conduct regular audits of the new data system and would create a new unit, TikTok U.S. Data Security, with 2,500 engineers, security experts and trust and safety officials, all based in the United States, who have access to TikTok's U.S. user data for business functions.

The unit would report to a three-member board assigned by CFIUS. In addition, TikTok's source code, which offers insight into why certain videos are shown in users' feeds, would be reviewed by Oracle and a third-party inspector.

Some details of the proposals were reported earlier by The Wall Street Journal.

The proposal, though, yielded little response from the panel, Mr. Andersen said. In a statement, a spokeswoman of the Treasury Department, the lead agency of CFIUS, said the panel was ''committed to taking all necessary actions within its authority to safeguard U.S. national security.''

TikTok's more aggressive lobbying stance will not necessarily yield different results. The company has few allies in Washington.

The most powerful tech lobbying groups, such as the Chamber of Progress and TechNet, prefer to represent American companies and have policies against representing Chinese companies.

In fact, many tech companies, including Meta, the parent of Facebook, have argued that TikTok poses a security threat.

''A halfway solution is no solution at all,'' said Mr. Hawley, who is among a growing number of lawmakers who don't see a compromise on data storage and access as a solution to TikTok's security risks.

Yet the growing pressure on the company has left it few options other than changing its approach, many outside experts say.

''The issue has become public in a way that they can't ignore,'' said Graham Webster, the editor in chief of the DigiChina Project at the Stanford University Cyber Policy Center. '' 

And this maybe their way of pushing to actually get the CIFUS agreement completed, which is really their best chance of sustainable business path in the United States.''

The publishing continues in the future. The World Students Society thanks authors Cecilia Kang, Sapna Maheshwari and David Mccabe.


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