Belgium is banning TikTok on government phones over concerns about cybersecurity, privacy and misinformation, the country’s prime minister said on Friday, reflecting recent action by other authorities in Europe and the US.

The Chinese-owned video-sharing app will be temporarily banned from devices owned or paid for by the Belgian federal government for at least six months, according to a post on Alexander de Croo’s website.

TikTok said it is «disappointed by this suspension, which is based on basic misinformation about our company.» The company said it is «readily available to meet with officials to address any concerns and set the record straight on misconceptions.»

TikTok is owned by China’s ByteDance, which moved its headquarters to Singapore in 2020. The company sought to distance itself from its Chinese roots, saying its parent company is incorporated outside of China and is majority owned by global institutional investors.

But the three main institutions of the European Union and the Danish Ministry of Defense have already ordered employees to remove the app from devices used for official business. Similar bans have been imposed in Canada and the US.

The dispute over TikTok is part of a broader global rivalry between China and the United States and its Western allies for technological and economic supremacy.

De Croo said Belgium’s ban was based on warnings from the state security service and its cybersecurity center, which said the app could collect user data and modify algorithms to manipulate its news feed and content.

They also warned that TikTok could be forced to spy on Beijing, he said, without being more specific.

“We are in a new geopolitical context where interstate influence and surveillance have shifted to the digital world,” de Croo said in an online statement. “We must not be naive: TikTok is a Chinese company that today is forced to cooperate with intelligence services. This is the reality. Prohibiting its use in federal service devices is common sense.»

TikTok said that user data is stored in the US and Singapore and pointed to new measures to alleviate European concerns by storing user data in European data centers.

“The Chinese government cannot force another sovereign nation to provide data stored on that nation’s territory,” the company said in a statement.