On Tuesday, Beijing-based ByteDance announced that the head of its artificial intelligence lab will leave the company, as its short-video app TikTok faces US scrutiny over security and privacy issues.
In 2017, Ma Wei-Ying joined ByteDance from Microsoft to become a vice president and head of the AI lab.
His departure comes as TikTok faces regulatory challenges across the globe, and a potential ban by the US government over suspicions Beijing could force its Chinese owner to turn over user data.
A ByteDance spokeswoman said that “We are extremely grateful to Wei-Ying for his important contribution to ByteDance.”
According to a person familiar with the matter, Ma will leave ByteDance this week. It is unclear who would replace him.
Ma did not immediately respond to a request to comment.
According to his LinkedIn profile, trained in Taiwan and the United States, Ma was assistant managing director of Microsoft Research Asia before taking the post at ByteDance.
Technology news website The Information first reported Ma’s departure and said he planned to take a position at China’s Tsinghua University.
Reuters has reported that ByteDance is expanding its engineering and research team in Mountain View, California, and had hired more than 150 engineers there.