Tuesday, May 18

TikTok strengthens account security for younger users

To reassure parents as much as the authorities, TikTok has decided to review its privacy policy for its younger users. From now on, the accounts of 13-15 year olds will automatically switch to private mode by default to better protect them.


L’application TikTok // Gamesdone : Pixabay

When you’re a parent, it’s difficult to have a permanent eye on your child’s digital life. And it tends to start earlier and earlier, sometimes even before the 13-year limit allowed by different platforms and social networks of all kinds.

To protect itself as much from the scolding of parents as from the authorities who scrutinize privacy policies with a severe eye, TikTok has decided to take new measures to set safeguards regarding the protection of privacy and the safety of his community.

From now on, accounts of users aged 13 to 15 will have their privacy settings much more locked down. But it will still be possible to change some options.

Restrictions to better protect yourself

The video-sharing social network will automatically switch the default privacy settings of the youngest to “private” mode. This is accompanied by other functionality changes to enhance security.

  • The “Recommend your account to others” option is disabled by default.
  • The “Everyone” option in video comments is removed. Only the “Friends” and “Private” options are accessible.
  • Downloading videos is no longer possible for creators under the age of 16. It will be disabled by default for 16-17 year olds.
  • The “Duo” and “Collage” functions are only accessible on content created by users over 16 years of age. For 16-17 year olds, they will be set by default to “Friends”.

This will therefore result in no longer leaving the videos of the youngest in the sight of all and limiting the options. The young user will have to accept subscription requests so that other “Tiktokers” can access their profile and see their content.

The desire to raise awareness among young users

And the social network hopes so ” encourage its youngest users to become actively involved in protecting their privacy ”. Aware that to better protect them, it is above all necessary to make them realize the dangers they incur, TikTok wants to try to strike the spirits, while leaving some returns to the freedom of use possible. The idea is not to scare away its youngest registrants who are also the most active on its service.

Pointed out in the past for letting the platform serve as a “showcase” for predators who came to contact, sometimes under a false name and a false profile, young users, TikTok takes the subject of the safety of its subscribers to arm. the body for some time now. Direct messaging has thus been removed from user accounts under the age of 16. They also cannot carry out livestreams.

In 2019, TikTok launched the “Family Connection” mode so that parents are also involved in the use of the service by their teenagers. Together, they could then decide which features to activate or limit.

« Protecting the privacy and security of our community are our top priorities at TikTok ”, explains Elaine Foxe, Privacy Officer at TikTok. “This is how we hope to see them pay more attention to all matters relating to their online privacy and make informed decisions. ” Major changes for some of the most frequent TikTok users. Multiple studies have shown that the average age of a registrant tends to flirt with the lower end of the minimum age allowed to have an account. Or even below …

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