TikTok Nears Deal With Oracle on User Data Storage

Short video sharing platform TikTok is close to reaching a deal with American computer software company Oracle Corporation, Reuters reported on Thursday citing people familiar with the matter. Under the deal, TikTok would store its U.S. users’ information on Oracle’s servers, while ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, would be unable to access the data.

The company hopes to solve the data security concerns expressed by the U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). Neither ByteDance nor Oracle immediately commented on the matter, and a TikTok spokesman declined to comment.

According to the proposed deal, a management team of hundreds of people will be set up to manage the information of the U.S. users. The two companies are discussing a structure under which the the U.S. data management team will not be controlled or supervised by TikTok. At the same time, TikTok is exploring cooperation with other technology companies regarding firewalls and cybersecurity measures.

This is not the first time that the two companies have negotiated such an agreement. In late 2020, TikTok announced that Oracle would take a stake in the company to meet some requirements of the previous Trump administration. At that time, U.S. officials asked ByteDance to sell TikTok’s U.S. business.

However, in June last year, President Biden lifted Trump’s ban, and Oracle’s participation in TikTok was rejected by the court. After Trump failed to win re-election, Oracle’s participation in TikTok had already failed.

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A TikTok spokesperson expressed in a statement, “TikTok is committed to protecting the privacy and security of our community. User data is stored in data centers in the U.S. and Singapore, and we continue to invest in data security as part of our overall work to keep our users and their information safe.”

TikTok is one of the most popular social media applications in the world, with more than 1 billion active users worldwide. Information on its American users is currently stored in a TikTok data center in Virginia and backed up in Singapore.