UK: TikTok could get a big fine for not protecting the data of children.
Britain could fine TikTok 27 million pounds ($28.91 million) because it may have broken the country’s data protection law by not protecting the privacy of children who use the platform.
The investigation found that TikTok could have used the information of children younger than 13 without their parents’ permission and didn’t give its users the right information in a clear way.
In a statement, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) said that it had sent a “notice of intent” to TikTok and TikTok Information Technologies UK Ltd.
“Companies that offer digital services have a legal obligation to put these protections in place,” Information Commissioner John Edwards said. “Our preliminary view is that TikTok did not meet this requirement.”
In an email to Reuters, a spokesperson for TikTok said, “While we respect the ICO’s role in protecting privacy in the UK, we disagree with the preliminary views expressed and will respond formally to the ICO when the time is right.”
The ICO’s preliminary view is that between May 2018 and July 2020, TikTok broke UK data protection law.
In July, the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee voted to pass a bill that would protect children’s privacy online until they are 16 and stop companies like TikTok and Snapchat (SNAP.N) from advertising to children without their permission.