WASHINGTON (NEWSnet/AP) — A bill that could lead to a ban of the popular video app TikTok in the United States is expected to pass the House on Wednesday as lawmakers act on concerns that the company's ownership structure is a threat to national security.

The bill would require the Chinese firm ByteDance to divest from TikTok and other applications it owns within six months of the bill’s enactment or those apps would be prohibited.

The lawmakers contend that ByteDance is beholden to the Chinese government, which could demand access to the data of TikTok's consumers in the U.S. any time it wants. The worry stems from a set of Chinese national security laws that compel organizations to assist with intelligence gathering.

The Senate would also need to pass the measure for it to become law, and lawmakers in that chamber indicated it would undergo a thorough review.

President Joe Biden has said if Congress passes the measure, he will sign it.

Members of Congress have long been critical of tech platforms and their influence. But by targeting TikTok, lawmakers are singling out a platform popular with millions of people, particularly a younger audience, months before an election.

Already, the federal government and more than half of U.S. states have banned the use of the social media app on government-owned devices. There are some limited exceptions on the federal government policy, such as for law enforcement.

Ahead of the House vote, a top national security official in the Biden administration held a closed-door briefing Tuesday with lawmakers to discuss TikTok and national security implications.

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