August 12, 2022

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TikTok still has a problem in the US: Beijing ‘spying’ personal data?

arrive to tik tok to me data Americans are worried again US authorities: Senate Intelligence Committee Chief asked Federal Trade Commission (FTC)Lina Khan, to open an investigation into Social media And the Chinese parent company Byte Dance Driven by what they define as the “recurrent lack of transparency around corporate governance, data protection, and usage practices.”

The request was signed by Democratic Senator Mark Warner (chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee) and Republican Marco Rubio (Vice President) after an article he published Buzzfeed which states that TikTok Allow software engineers and executives in China to access information Personal data of US users.

Alleged violation of aggregate Based on safety It alarmed the world of Italian and European politics: Marco DrestoMember of the European Parliament and Honorary Member of EU Parliament Committee on Foreign Intervention in EuropeFoot Question to the committee The European Commission is asking if it intends to request more clarity and transparency from TikTok.

For nearly two years, TikTok has been in the crosshairs of the US authorities for issues related to “national security”. Former President Donald Trump asked parent company ByteDance to sell TikTok for fear that US user data would end up in the hands of the Chinese government. The United States is the largest market for small video social media It has more than 1 billion active users.

TikTok reassures the US: ‘Strong data controls’

TikTok’s response to the US Senate was not long in coming. In the media section of his website in English Michael Pekerman, President of Public Policy for the Americas, explained application data practicesand ensure that personal information is ‘subject to strong controls and “Safeguards such as encryption of some data e Authorization approval protocols under the supervision of our team of US security managers.” The director continued that licenses become more restrictive as data becomes more sensitive.

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“As a general rule, our security teams want to reduce the number of people who can access data and reduce it to Only those who need access to it for their workBeckerman writes. “We have rules and procedures that restrict our employees’ internal access to user data, wherever they are, based on their needs. Like many global companies, TikTok has engineering teams around the world – mountain view, london, dublin, singapore, china – And the These teams may need access to data for software engineering jobs specifically relevant to their role. This access is subject to a series of strong controls.”

US data security department is half disguised

TikTok opened a new division called US Data Security (Usds) in May To better focus on strengthening governance and data protection practices, says Beckerman. The US director continues: “We want to limit not only who is accessing the data but also the points from which it is accessed. For this reason, in addition to routing all US traffic through the Oracle Cloud infrastructure, We are also working to increase our computer engineering capacity in the United StatesThis is to avoid the need to transfer data between different regions. As we recently informed members of Congress, We are working on a new system Where access to US user data by anyone outside the US is restricted and in any event subject to robust access protocols with Oracle’s monitoring and oversight mechanisms.”

Last week, TikTok told US senators that it was working on the final version of an agreement with the Biden administration that would “fully protect US user data and national security interests.”

TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew spoke personally to reassure senators that he is working with Oracle to create “New advanced controls on data security We hope to finish in the near future.”

Question to the EU Commission on security and privacy

TikTok CEO comments that “Chinese employees of the platform have access to US user data” They are concerned from a privacy point of view and from a geopolitical point of view“, He said Marco DrestoMember of the European Parliament at the University. “TikTok is directly under the control of the Chinese government, a hostile government and a country considered to be defied by NATO’s recent ‘strategic concept’. Knowing that social platform employees have access to European user data – including sensitive data – is troubling. That’s why It has submitted a question to the European Commission asking if it intends to ask TikTok for more clarity and transparency and whether it is aware of its intelligence-gathering activities in China. We cannot let our guard down when it comes to China and cybersecurity. Beijing has proven to be an extremely unreliable and hostile actor that we cannot underestimate even when it comes to social media, disinformation and propaganda from the Chinese Communist Party.”

There is no TikTok store in Italy and the European Union (for now)

Separately, TikTok explained its strategy E-Commerce After rumors spread of abandoning the activation of the online purchase function in the European Union and the United States markets. It is located around TikTok store, active in Asia (China, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam) E It was launched last year in the UK. “We have not paused or delayed the launch of the TikTok store in other European markets, including Italy, France, Germany or Spain,” a company spokesperson said.

On the TikTok store, influencers can broadcast direct selling products through a clickable orange basket on the app screen. But, I mentioned financial timesThe initiative encountered some problems. The company instead responded that “our goal has been and remains to make TikTok Shop successful in the UK, along with the merchants and brands we work with” and adds that, “even if the future international expansion of the TikTok Store is achieved as discussed in the summary or As a long-term goal, There were no concrete plans to launch into European markets in the first half of this year.”

According to FT, by contrast, TikTok planned to launch the feature in Germany, France, Italy and Spain in the first half of this year, before expanding to the United States in 2022, but Expansion plans will be abandoned after the UK project fails to achieve its goals And influencers left the program.

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