A claim filed in the U.K. and EU seeks billions of dollars from social media developer TikTok for the collection and usage of data from minors on their platform.
The suit is being brought by former children’s commissioner for England Anne Longfield and is filed on behalf of millions of children in both the U.K. and the European Union. If successful, these children could receive thousands of dollars in payment.
Lawyers for the prosecution have said they will argue that TikTok takes personal information like phone numbers, video clips, real-time GPS data and even biometric information from minors on its platform. According to the suit, TikTok does so without sufficient warnings or transparency, and has also waived mandatory consent forms required by law.
TikTok responded to the claims, saying “Privacy and safety are top priorities for TikTok and we have robust policies, processes and technologies in place to help protect all users, and our teenage users in particular.” TikTok says the claims have no merit and that it will “vigorously defend” themselves against this suit.
The suit will cover all minors who have used TikTok since May 25, 2018. Longfield made comments to the BBC that she was focusing on TikTok due to its “excessive” use of user data.
In 2020, TikTok and parent company ByteDance made billions in revenue and currently has a roster of 800 million users worldwide.
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