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As the Chinese company intensified efforts to get its point of view heard in Washington before a crucial hearing next week, six more U.S. senators on Friday backed bipartisan legislation that would grant President Joe Biden new authority to ban Chinese-owned video app TikTok on national security grounds.

Twelve senators, led by Democrats Mark Warner and Republicans John Thune, introduced legislation earlier this month that received support from the White House and would grant the Commerce Department new authority to deal with TikTok, which has more than 100 million American subscribers.

The announcement follows TikTok’s statement this week that the Biden administration demands that the company’s Chinese owners sell their shares in the business or risk a potential US ban.

Republican Donald Trump, who served as Biden’s predecessor, attempted to outlaw TikTok in 2020 but was thwarted by US courts.

To allay concerns that the US user data for ByteDance-owned TikTok may be given to the Chinese government, the Restricting the Emergence of Security Threats that Risk Information and Communications Technology (RESTRICT) Act now has nine Republican and nine Democratic supporters.

Separately, a source told Reuters on Friday that the Justice Department had launched an investigation into possible criminal activity after ByteDance claimed that in December, some workers had inappropriately accessed the US TikTok user data of two journalists.

Four ByteDance employees were fired as a result of the incident, according to Reuters, including two in China and two in the US. Business representatives announced that they were taking extra precautions to safeguard user data.

Employees of ByteDance had access to the material in an unsuccessful attempt to look into earlier this year’s firm information leaks. They were looking for any ties between two journalists.

The chief executive of TikTok, Shou Zi Chew, will testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on March 23 for the first time in front of Congress.

TikTok announced that content producers would travel to Washington the following week to argue against the app’s continued use. TikTok stated on Friday that lawmakers debating TikTok in Washington should hear firsthand from those whose lives would be directly impacted by their decisions.