A visitor takes a photo at the booth of TikTok, a social media app of Chinese tech firm ByteDance, during a gaming fair in Cologne, Germany, in August. (MARTIN MEISSNER / AP)
Short-video app TikTok is working on an initiative called "Project Texas" to address the US government concerns about data security, its CEO said on Wednesday.
Shou Zi Chew, CEO of TikTok, said Project Texas is designed to isolate sensitive data of its US users so that only staff in the United States can access it. The move is part of the company's broader push to beef up data management and to ease US officials' concern about data security.
The effort is "extremely difficult and expensive to build," Chew said at the Bloomberg New Economy Forum in Singapore on Wednesday.
"It's unprecedented. No company has attempted this," Chew said. "I'm very confident that through the detailed discussions that we're going to have, we will come up with a solution that will reasonably address the national security concerns."
Chew made his comments after US FBI Director Christopher Wray alleged on Tuesday that the US operations of Chinese-owned TikTok raise national security concerns, according to foreign news reports.
In response to such reports, China's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said at a news conference in Beijing on Wednesday that the US side is spreading false information and using it as an excuse to suppress the Chinese enterprises concerned, which has become a common practice of the US.
China firmly opposes such attempts and hopes that the US side will adopt a more responsible approach, and earnestly respect and abide by fair, open and nondiscriminatory international rules, Mao said.