TikTok’s terms and conditions can be confusing. It doesn’t explain how the app collects data about users, or what “voiceprint” or “faceprint” mean. Nor does it explain what “indemnify” means. What’s more, many of the terms and conditions do not appear to be legally binding.
TikTok collects data on users
Among the data that TikTok collects on its users is their MAC addresses. MAC addresses are unique identification numbers for network equipment. These numbers are used to track connections between networks. The video-sharing app also collects content and metadata from users. It shares this information with Facebook and third-party platforms. Moreover, it collects data about users’ locations.
The TikTok spokesperson told the 2020 Senate committee that the Australian government can request the company’s data under national security laws. But she added that this would require the company to go through a mutual legal assistance treaty process with Australia if it wanted to access user data. However, if the government did make such a request, it would likely be able to obtain the data through that process.
The data collected by TikTok has caused concern among the U.S. government and many others. The Chinese company that owns the site is required by law to help the Chinese government with their intelligence operations. Furthermore, the company’s authoritarian nature further complicates matters.
Despite this conflict, TikTok executives have denied that they are under the thumb of the Chinese government. However, the FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr has asked Apple to remove the app from Apple’s app stores. He also cited Chinese laws as the reason for the request.
The US government is investigating whether TikTok is collecting data on US citizens. It has also threatened to ban the app if it continues to collect data on US citizens. It is unclear whether TikTok will comply with these requests, but it has said that it does not share personal information with the Chinese government.
The White House believes that TikTok has a potential threat to national security. The company’s parent company, ByteDance, is based in China. As a result, it has the ability to access the private data of millions of Americans. However, there is no evidence that TikTok has shared this information.
TikTok has recently updated its privacy settings for teen users. By default, a user’s account must be 13 years old or older. However, it allows users to opt out of this feature. Users should also check their settings to ensure that they have set their privacy settings appropriately.
It doesn’t define terms like “faceprints” or “voiceprints”
A recent TikTok update allows the app to collect biometric data from users’ videos, including voice and faceprints. While this may seem benign, there are some concerns. First, TikTok doesn’t define the terms or explain how the information is used. It also doesn’t explain how users can consent to such data collection.
While the company doesn’t define terms like “faceprint” or “voiceprint,” TikTok does require consent for its biometric data collection. Besides collecting user biometric data, TikTok collects a myriad of other data on its users. For example, it collects GPS location information, battery life on mobile devices, and uploaded content metadata.
Despite these concerns, TikTok has repeatedly claimed that its data is stored in the United States, outside of the jurisdiction of China. However, Chinese employees have access to the vault that stores user data. As a result, the company has become complicit in Chinese intelligence work.
The app has been at the centre of controversy in recent months. In the US, it has been accused of weaponizing human data and threatening the security of Americans. Its existence has led to pressure from Congress and other government agencies. It’s crucial that Australians are vigilant when using apps based on voice and face input.
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