THE Scottish Government has banned the Chinese-owned social media app TikTok from its official devices, as the UK parliament moves to block it from its networks completely.

The Scottish Government ban comes amid concerns “on the potential tracking and privacy risks from certain social media apps”.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “Currently there is limited use of TikTok within government and limited need for staff to use the app on work devices.

“This ban will be implemented immediately. It does not extend to personal devices used by staff or the general public.”

The National:

The commissions of both the House of Commons and the Lords cited security concerns as they decided to impose the ban across the Palace of Westminster.

A spokesman said TikTok “will be blocked from all parliamentary devices and the wider parliamentary network”.

“Cyber security is a top priority for Parliament, however we do not comment on specific details of our cyber or physical security controls, policies or incidents,” the spokesman added.

People will be able to continue using the app on their phones’ data but will be blocked from accessing it on parliamentary wifi.

The BBC has also told its staff to delete TikTok from any corporate devices unless they are using it for editorial and marketing reasons.

TikTok, owned by Chinese internet company ByteDance, argues that it does not share data with China.

But Beijing’s intelligence legislation requires firms to help the Communist Party when requested.

READ MORE: Pat Kane: What data would China want? TikTok's all kittens and lip-syncs isn't it?

TikTok called Parliament’s move “misguided and based on fundamental misconceptions about our company”.

“TikTok is enjoyed by millions of people in the UK, and potentially depriving users from access to and engagement with their representatives is a self-defeating step, especially in our shared fight against misinformation,” a spokesman said.

“We are disappointed that, despite our requests, we have not been offered any opportunity to address concerns and only ask to be judged on facts and treated equally to our competitors.

“We have begun implementing a comprehensive plan to further protect our European user data, which includes storing UK user data in our European data centres and tightening data access controls, including third-party independent oversight of our approach.”

The latest bans were announced as TikTok chief executive Shou Zi Chew made a rare public appearance to be grilled by the US Congress over data security and user safety.

“Let me state this unequivocally: ByteDance is not an agent of China or any other country,” Chew said, as he made his case for why the popular app should not be banned.

When the UK Government announced its ban last week, citing a risk to “sensitive” data, Beijing reacted angrily.

The Chinese embassy in the UK described it as a move “based on its political motive rather than facts” and said it will “ultimately harm the UK’s own interests”.