Montana issued a complete ban of TikTok, is Utah next?

May 19, 2023, 8:00 PM

tiktok logo is shown, kids' social media use is under scrutiny from health officials...

FILE - The TikTok logo is seen on a mobile phone in front of a computer screen which displays the TikTok home screen, Saturday, March 18, 2023, in Boston. Montana became the first state in the country to ban TikTok. Dave and Dujanovic discuss if Utah will be the next state to do the same. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)

(AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)

SALT LAKE CITY — Earlier this week, Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte signed a piece of legislation that will ban TikTok from his state. 

It’s the first state in the nation to issue a complete ban of the social media platform. Late last year, Utah Gov. Spencer Cox ordered a ban of TikTok from all state-owned devices

So what’s next? Or, who’s next? On Thursday, Debbie Dujanovic and guest host Taylor Morgan discussed on Dave & Dujanovic if Utah is the next state to follow Montana’s lead.

Earl Foote, an IT expert with Nexus IT, joined the show to share some insight on what may happen next.

Montana TikTok ban is a complicated issue

Dujanovic begins the conversation by asking, “Do you agree with what the governor said here out of Montana that the Chinese Communist Party is using TikTok to spy on Americans?”

“Very, very complicated issue here,” Foote said. “There’s a lot of consideration certainly … Simply passing one of these laws does not mean it’s all going to work overnight. There’s a lot of work to be done behind the scenes to actually implement something like this.”

Foote says that he does agree with the Montana governor and that TikTok is being used by the Chinese. 

Ways to get around the ban

Even if a ban does come to Utah, Foote says, without getting into specifics, there are ways to get around it.

“There absolutely are workarounds,” he said.

However, Foote says some of these workarounds can be used for malicious purposes. He did say some workarounds are easier than others.

“Just because a state bans a social media app doesn’t mean our kids won’t be able to download it or access it through other means,” Dujanovic said. 

“I would say most youth or 20-something understand what a VPN app is and know how to use it,” Foote said. “So, it’s definitely not a guarantee.”

A VPN makes the device appear it is operating from a different location than where it actually is, Dujanovic said.

Listen to the entire segment.


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Montana issued a complete ban of TikTok, is Utah next?