TikTok Under EU Scrutiny Over Data Collection, Privacy Concerns

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TikTok has come under the radar once again, this time, the European Union will be examining the popular short-form video app. The European Data Protection Board (EDPB) will be setting up a task force to assess TikTok's data collection, security, and privacy risks.

TikTok Under EU Scrutiny Over Data Collection, Privacy Concerns

 

TikTok Under EU Radar

The EDPB first received a request from an EU lawmaker, who was concerned about the way TikTok collects users' data, its privacy, and security infrastructure. This led to setting up a task force to look into the matter and scrutinize the way TikTok operates.

According to a statement by EDPB, the newly set up task force will co-ordinate potential actions and seek an overview of TikTok's processing and practices across the EU. Apart from TikTok, the watchdog has also warned the EU police forces against using facial recognition software from Clearview AI, a US company.

TikTok is owned by China-based ByteDance. TikTok is one of the most popular apps and has a large user base in India and worldwide. Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic and eventual lockdown witnessed soaring popularity for the short video app.

On the other hand, Clearview AI, another company under EU's radar, is a firm that scans the internet for publicly available photos and uses facial recognition to identify potential suspects. However, its methods have led to wide protests and criticism across Canada and the US, as it can easily be misused.

"The EDPB has doubts as to whether any Union or Member State law provides a legal basis for using a service such as the one offered by Clearview AI. The EDPB is therefore of the opinion that the use of a service such as Clearview AI by law enforcement authorities in the European Union would, as it stands, likely not be consistent with the EU data protection regime," EDPB said.

 

This isn't the first time TikTok has come under the lens for its data collection and privacy issues. Back in 2019, the US Federal Investigation authority raised concerns about how TikTok was collecting sensitive information of citizens. Moreover, TikTok has received backlash as multiple security flaws that give complete access to hackers have also been discovered.

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