FILE PHOTO: The messenger app WeChat is seen next to its logo in this illustration picture taken August 7, 2020. REUTERS/Florence Lo/Illustration

(Reuters) – U.S. oil giant Chevron Corp CVX.N has asked employees globally to delete Tencent Holdings Ltd’s WeChat from their work phones, following the Trump administration’s executive order to ban the social media app, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday.

A U.S. judge on Sunday blocked a government order requiring Apple Inc AAPL.O and Alphabet Inc’s Google GOOGL.O to remove WeChat for downloads on national security grounds.

The U.S. Commerce Department said on Monday it would challenge the order.

WeChat is an all-in-one mobile app that combines messaging, social media, payment functions and other services and boasts more than a billion users globally.

Chevron, in a staff email, identified WeChat as a “non-compliant application” and asked those with the app on their work handsets to delete it before Sept. 27 or face disconnection from the company’s network, according to the Bloomberg report.

Chevron and Tencent, which has denied its apps pose a national security risk, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The United States has launched a series of measures in recent months cracking down on Chinese tech firms and apps, as the world’s two largest economies butt heads on issues ranging from trade and technology to the handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Reporting by Rama Venkat in Bengaluru; Editing by Ramakrishnan M.



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