The popular social media APP TicToc has a security flaw or is it just spying?
When we dig deeper into this subject we find that the parent company is TenCent. This company is owned by a Chinese businessman who calls himself “Pony Ma”. It’s rumored that he got his start by ripping off another business ICQ chat platform. He called his cloned version OICQ. Cloning other’s ideas or work has always been a common practice in China.
Don’t believe me? Well check the made-in tags on your favorite purse 👛 or maybe the knock-off watch ⌚️ your wearing. Back to “Pony Ma” in 1999 AOL the owner of ICQ sued his company TenCent for copyright infringement. OICQ was forced to shut done only to reopen as a rebrande QQ.
In 2003 he added an avatar feature he stole from another APP from Korea. TenCent picked up more and more services they would clone from other APPS. In 2005 they were the biggest platform in Chain. We acquired investors from all over the world. They became a multi-million dollar company. This gave them the capital to make more APPs and games.
List of a few TenCent APPS:
Riot Games, Funcom, Sharkmob, Epic Games, Activision Blizzard, Ubisoft, Krafton, Supercell, Frontier
Investors are South African media company Naspers purchased a 46.5% share of Tencent in 2001. As of 2021, it owns 30.86% through Prosus, which also owns a stake in Tencent’s sister companies, such as OLX, VK, Trip.com Group, Delivery Hero, Bykea, Meesho, Stack Overflow, Udemy, Codecademy, Brainly and PayU.
TenCent reputation was that of a copycat business. They were also accused of overworking their employees with 17-18 hour work days. Employees would be shamed for leaving early. Grant it, this doesn’t matter to you but it attests to their reputation. QQ kept growing and seemed unstable.
However, in 2010 smartphones became popular and less expensive for the average user. A new APP from the west emerged “Whats APP” TenCent tried to buy the APP for 10 million dollars but the deal fell through because Pony Ma had to undergo back surgery. Mark Zuckerberg owner of Facebook beat him to the punch and paid 19 Billion dollars.
In 2011 TenCent launched WeChat to compete with What’s APP. It was a colon of Whats APP and Kik. They added a feature ” push to talk” stolen from Talkbox which refused to sell them the service. This ruthless “sell or else” business model is because a company’s goto practice for TenCent. Sell to us and make money or fall when we clone your services.
WeChat did just as it’d predicted and stomped its competition into the ground in China.
Now that we have a background on TenCent why is the US government banned TicTok? The relationship between the Chinese government (CCP). The CCP allows TenCent do whatever they want in exchange for access to its platforms. They censor the information that’s allowed to be exchanged between users. TenCent openly admitted that they allow the CCP to monitor and censor the data from the APP, games, and Software.
I have been a victim of using WeChat in my earlier years and just recently TicTok. How can the average user know what’s safe? TikTok went global because the CCP wanted it that way. They saw that Tencents TicTok was a great tool to collect data on westerners. With its addictive platform, it spread like wildfire. Pony Ma may not have had this in mind when they created the APP but the Chinese government had other plans for the APP.
TenCent has now investing western companies which brings up the question if the CCP is now involved in those companies also. From a national security, standpoint is very possible that many other popular APPs will become data-gathering tools on western civilization. Normally I’d say this is just another day at the business for another company. However, the CCP has essentially converted Tencent into a special project for spying on anyone, including its citizens. This was known during Covid-19 when the CCP threatened isn’t own for speaking out about Covid. People that used the app to protest the restrictions band were beaten and banned from the APP.
It’s like a direct like to your government’s ear. However, the CCPs response is much different than it would be here in the West.
So the next time you pick up your phone to say something watch which APP you use. Why? Because the Chinese government is collecting all this data for a reason. The CCP is not shy when it shares its views with Western governments about becoming the only world power in the future. You and I could be contributing to the data pool they are building to take down our government. LoL you say? Trust me is possible because we did it to the USSR. Of course, it wasn’t by using an APP but misdirected and rumors will sink ships. Propaganda is a very effective tool and even better when you have lots of data to support it.
Let’s say you wanted to discredit a company. How would you start? The best way would be to research the company and find the dirt. What if I could have the company give me this dirt willingly? Please accept this 2,007-page policy agreement before you install the APP. It’s that easy! A highly addictive APP that everyone wants on their phones. They have access to your microphone and camera at any time. Now you’re a fly on the wall at every business meeting. At every dinner, at every intimate moment of the user’s life.
Now you’re getting the picture! That free app isn’t looking so great anymore, is it? Well, it shouldn’t unless you are a friend of the CCP. We call ourselves patriots but let China take away our freedom. Something to think about.
Dave Borgne DaveTheNerdGuy LLC.