Nakasone told the Senate Armed Services Committee he is concerned about the broad influence Chinese-owned video app TikTok has on its users and what content it can omit or advertise on the platform.
The NSA director was responding to a question raised by Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), who asked the general how concerned he was of the influence the social media platform has on American children.
“TikTok concerns me for a number of different reasons. One is the data that they have. Secondly, is the algorithm and who controls the algorithm. Third is the broad platform influence operations, as we talked about previously. It’s not only a fact that you can influence something, but you can also you know, turn off the message as well when you have such a large population of listeners,” Nakasone said.
Nakasone’s remarks were made the same day Democratic senators unveiled a legislation intended to give the federal government more power to regulate or ban technology tied to a foreign adversary.
The bill, also known as the RESTRICT Act, is sponsored by Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and John Thune (R-S.D.).
This also follows an order issued by the White House last week requiring all federal agencies to remove TikTok from government devices within 30 days.
Federal officials have long raised national security concerns over TikTok, which is owned by Chinese company ByteDance.
During his testimony Tuesday, Nakasone broadly warned that China has become “a very capable force” and “formidable foe” in cyberspace.