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TSA Bans TikTok Videos From Agency Social Media Accounts

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The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced Sunday employees would no longer be permitted to use TikTok to post on behalf of the agency’s social media accounts.

According to the New York Post, the decision to ban the use of the Chinese owned video-sharing app comes after Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer voiced concerns about potential national security issues.

TSA officials said several employees who managed the agency’s social media accounts had used the TikTok platform to create videos that were shared with followers, but the agency has told its staff they are no longer allowed to use the video-sharing app on TSA accounts.

While the TSA never had a TikTok account or posted content directly to the platform, the federal agency’s employees posted videos on TSA social media accounts that featured the social media platform’s logo in the corner.

Senator Schumer began advocating for the agency to stop using TikTok after he called on intelligence officials to investigate the platform to protect national security. He followed up his comments with a letter to TSA Administrator David Pekoske on Saturday, which sparked the ban.

When asked about the decision, Schumer defended his position and cited a Department of Homeland Security rule prohibiting TikTok on agency devices. The Department of Defense and the State Department have also banned employees from posting on the social media platform.

“Given the widely reported threats, the already-in-place agency bans, and the existing concerns posed by TikTok, the feds cannot continue to allow the TSA’s use of the platform to fly,” Schumer said in a statement.

“These videos sure do make you chuckle; they’re creative,” the senator continued. “But China might be laughing at these TSA postings for very different reasons, and that should concern us and it’s why I am urging the TSA to find a different platform, and cease its use of TikTok now.”

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TSA Confirms First Employee Death Related to Coronavirus

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The Transportation Security Administration announced Friday that a federal employee working at a New Jersey airport died from complications associated with coronavirus, marking the agency’s first COVID-19-related death.

According to the official TSA website, 39-year-old Francis “Frank” Boccabella III died on April 2 after 16 years with the organization. He was an Explosive Detection Canine Handler at Newark Liberty International Airport.

A TSA spokesperson sent heartfelt condolences to Boccabella’s wife, extended family, colleagues and friends. “His passing represents a personal loss to all of us who knew him and cherished both his friendship and professionalism,” the statement read.

Boccabella joined the TSA in 2004 at John F. Kennedy International Airport before becoming a Compliance Inspector at the Newark airport and finally settling into his role as an Explosive Detection Canine Handler.

Boccabella worked with a six-year-old German Short-haired Pointer named Bullet to screen hundreds of thousands of passengers, keeping them and the transportation network safe.

In recent weeks, the TSA received updated protocols regarding the spread of coronavirus, including the decision to allow employees to wear N95 masks and eye protection, as well as mandatory nitrile gloves.

The TSA also recently announced a new website to provide travelers with updated airport regulations and keep track of confirmed cases of coronavirus among employees.

This post was published by our news partner: TravelPulse.com | Article Source

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