The Information Commissioner’s Office have announced a £12.7 million penalty on TikTok this week for misusing children’s data.
There were reportedly approximately 1.4 million cases of the social media app failing to get parental consent from British users under the age of 13.
UK Information Commissioner John Edwards said in a statement, “There are laws in place to make sure our children are as safe in the digital world as they are in the physical world. TikTok did not abide by those laws.
“As a consequence, an estimated one million under 13’s were inappropriately granted access to the platform, with TikTok collecting and using their personal data. That means that their data may have been used to track them and profile them, potentially delivering harmful, inappropriate content at their very next scroll.
“TikTok should have known better. TikTok should have done better. Our £12.7m fine reflects the serious impact their failures may have had. They did not do enough to check who was using their platform or take sufficient action to remove the underage children that were using their platform.”
The Chinese-owned company replied in it’s own statement, saying, “TikTok is a platform for users aged 13 and over. We invest heavily to help keep under 13’s off the platform and our 40,000 strong safety team works around the clock to help keep the platform safe for our community.
“While we disagree with the ICO’s decision, which relates to May 2018 – July 2020, we are pleased that the fine announced today has been reduced to under half the amount proposed last year. We will continue to review the decision and are considering next steps.”
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