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TikTok has refuted claims that its parent company ByteDance intended to utilize the app to track the whereabouts of US individuals.
The social media giant said on Twitter that neither the American government nor any activists, celebrities, or journalists have ever been “targeted.”
Additionally, the company claimed it does not get exact location information from US consumers.
Forbes cited internal business “documents” it analyzed for the study.
ByteDance said it had launched a surveillance effort to look into wrongdoing by both present and former workers.
It stated that a US citizen’s location data would be collected by the project’s Beijing-based team at least twice.
According to the study, it was unclear whether data on American people had ever been collected. However, there was a proposal to collect location information from US customers’ mobile devices.
TikTok does not collect exact GPS location information from US users. Therefore it could not monitor US users as the story stated,” the statement continued.
Authorities worldwide are investigating app makers, particularly concerning the data of military and intelligence employees.
A US national security commission ordered ByteDance to sell TikTok’s American operations in 2020. Due to worries that the company would provide the Chinese government access to user data.
To address various regulatory difficulties, TikTok said that in June, it moved the data of US users to servers at Oracle, which has its headquarters in Austin.
TikTok is currently facing a £27 million ($30 million) fine in the UK for failure to safeguard children’s privacy while using the site,
The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office discovered that the video-sharing platform might have handled the under-13s’ data without their consent.
The watchdog stated that the breach occurred for more than two years, from July 2020, but it had not made any inferences yet.
The results were contested by Tiktok, who labeled them as “provisional.”
TikTok is the fastest-growing social media app in the world with over 3.9 billion downloads.
It has generated more than $6.2 billion (£5.5 billion) in gross income from in-app purchases since 2017.
TikTok accepted the U.S government’s concessions
Chew reaffirmed TikTok’s assertion that “100% of U.S. user traffic” is currently being sent to Oracle’s cloud computing infrastructure.
TikTok also intends to remove all American user data from its Singaporean data centers in the future.
According to Chew, TikTok would provide staff in China “limited” access to U.S. user data as part of the updated security strategy. In addition, TikTok asserts that neither the Chinese government nor the Chinese Communist Party has ever asked it to share data with them.
President Biden canceled Trump’s unilateral orders banning WeChat and TikTok in June.
The Biden administration and TikTok reached an agreement to address security issues.
TikTok would be obligated to keep user data from Americans alone per that proposed agreement. In addition, it must give Oracle control over the content algorithms used by the social media company. It must also set up a board of “security experts” to manage TikTok’s American activities.