Security agents at US airports are being told to face the music and kick their TikTok video addiction.

On Sunday, the US Transport Security Agency (TSA) were told to stop using the viral social media platform over security concerns.

The app which is popular with millions of teens and young adults, has come under the scrutiny of the US government. The Chinese-owned app was the subject of a national security review at the beginning of the year.

This resulted in TikTok being banned from government owned smartphones in other agencies including the US Navy. However, according to USA Today, it was only this weekend that the head of the airport and travel security agency David Pekoske was instructed to remove the app from staff phones.


While there agency said it had no official TikTok content channel, it has been harder to control staff from using personal profiles on the devices.

In a statement the agency admitted that a "small number of TSA employees have previously used TikTok on their personal devices to create videos for use in TSA's social media outreach, but that practice has since been discontinued."

The app, also known as Douyin in China, has over 500million users worldwide.

In recent years the TSA has grown a popular following on its social media platforms. The agency's Instagram account which dispenses travel advice and informal security updates has over 1million followers around the world, and their quirky social media messaging has been nominated for awards.

Annual round-ups of contraband items and live travel Q&As have grown their online presence and changed the public perception of the agency. Security screening has seldom been travellers' favourite part of an airport, though their viral social media posts are largely popular.

However, the latest move to appeal to younger travellers might have been a move too far.
Musical parodies of what can and can't be taken as checked luggage have landed the agency in trouble, after being singled out in a letter from Senator Chuck Schumer.

"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 told Associated Press.

The agency told USA Today it had never directed viewers to TikTok or published content directly to the platform, despite videos reposted on other TSA social media accounts showing a TikTok watermark.


A spokesperson for New Zealand's Customs and Border agency told the Herald that it does not allow social media apps on staff devices "due to privacy and security reasons."

Any staff member installing Tiktok app (or any other unauthorised app ) on their phone would cause the device to "not be properly functional until the app was removed".