tech

Dutch watchdog to probe TikTok over how it handles children’s data

The watchdog said it would investigate whether TikTok ensures adequate privacy protection of Dutch children.

TikTok comes under scrutiny once again
TikTok comes under scrutiny once again (Bloomberg)

TikTok has become immensely popular worldwide including India. The short-video sharing platform, however, has not been without its share of controversies, especially around user privacy and security. The social networking company is once again under scanner. The Dutch privacy watchdog has said it will now probe how the Chinese company handles data of its young users.

"For many users this is an important way of staying in touch with friends and spending time together, particularly during the current coronavirus crisis," the Dutch Data Protection Authority (DPA) is quoted as saying. "The rise of TikTok has led to growing concerns about privacy."

The watchdog said it will "examine whether TikTok adequately protects the privacy of Dutch children." The DPA further said it will investigate whether app explicitly tells that the app needs parental consent for TikTok to collect, store, and use kids' personal data.

As said earlier, TikTok has faced scrutiny around the world. For instance, the US Navy banned the application in December last year from its government issued smartphones. The app was also briefly banned in India over objectionable content on its platform. Last year in February, it was hit with $5.7 million fine in US for violating child privacy laws.

Following wide security concerns, Twitter has taken a slew of measures including opening a transparency center. The company has also begun publishing transparency report on the governmental requests for its users' account information.