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Complaint Against TikTok in the Name of All British and European Children

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Former English children’s rights commissioner Anne Longfield takes video app TikTok to court. She says she does this on behalf of millions of children in the United Kingdom and Europe.

 

According to her, the app illegally collects a lot of personal data from those children.

Phone numbers, videos, photos, location data and even biometric data for facial recognition. According to Longfield, it is all collected by TikTok. But there’s more. According to her, the app does this without being notified, without transparency and without approval being given. Three things that are mandatory since the new data protection law GDPR from May 2018.

And so all children who have used the app since May 2018 – regardless of whether they have created an account themselves or not – have been victims, according to the former children’s rights commissioner. TikTok intentionally remains vague about user data, she says, because that info is just “unbelievable value” to the company.

She points out that parent company ByteDance, which is registered in the Cayman Islands, reportedly had sales of nearly $ 30 billion last year. Two-thirds of that are advertising income.

“TikTok is a trendy platform that has helped kids keep in touch with their friends through a challenging year,” said Longfield. “But behind the fun songs, the dance challenges or the playback, there is something malicious. We want TikTok to stop its questionable data collection practices and ask that it erase any private information it has illegally obtained while children are using the application.”

A spokesman for TikTok responded that the complaint “has no basis”. The company plans to “defend itself fiercely”. “Privacy and security are absolute priorities for TikTok, and we have robust practices and technologies to protect all users, especially young people.”

In February 2019, TikTok was already sentenced to a fine of 5.7 million dollars in the United States. It illegally obtained the personal data of under 13-year-olds, such as their name, e-mail and home address.

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