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Can TikTok Record You Without You Knowing?

Can TikTok Record You Without You Knowing?

It seems like the whole world is on TikTok. And why not? It’s a fantastic outlet for people who love to dance, lip-sync, and do comedy improv. You can really let your personality shine. But what about your personal information?

Like most social media apps, how TikTok collects user information is always heavily scrutinized. What does TikTok know about you? What does the company do with the info itself? And can TikTok record you without you being aware of it?

TikTok Controversy

In 2018, TikTok was fined $5.7 million due to illegal collection of names, pictures, locations, and addresses of children that were 13 years old or younger.

The company was aware that many young people were using the app, but they didn’t ask for permission from the parents or guardians with regards to gathering all that data.

This news spread around the globe and left TikTok with a veil of suspicion hanging over it. Since then, they’ve changed their privacy policy regarding their youngest users.

The policy lists that they only collect usernames, passwords, and dates of birth. However, even though news of this fine caused some unease among parents, the app is growing in popularity every day.

TikTok Record You Without You Knowing

Is TikTok Recording You Without Your Knowledge?

Answering this question isn’t as simple as it seems. First of all, no one really knows what apps do when you give them permission to access all your data.

Even when you go through their privacy policy in detail, you’ll see that there’s no 100% guarantee that your information will be protected.

That’s the case with TikTok as well. There are rumors that TikTok is a Chinese spy app, but there’s no evidence to support that claim. When you register to TikTok, you have to give it access to your microphone and camera.

Once you do that, theoretically, TikTok can access them at any time and record you without you knowing. And that’s the same with all apps that ask for those permissions, including Instagram and WhatsApp.

Can TikTok Record You Without Knowing

What Does TikTok Do with Your Information?

When it comes to apps like TikTok, it’s not so much about what information they can get from you, but what they do with it. On TikTok’s official website, they have a list of ways they use your information. It’s probably best to check it out before registering.

That way, you’ll know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. But even if it’s too late, and you’re already lip-syncing every day, you can still keep yourself informed. TikTok uses your data to:

  1. Do data analysis, create statistics, and better their services.
  2. Customization of content.
  3. To send you promotional material from them directly, as well as third-parties.
  4. To inform their algorithms and learn about your interests.
  5. To detect abusive behavior or illegal activity.

These are just examples of the ways TikTok uses your data. Some of them make sense, whilst others are a little confusing. TikTok claims that they don’t sell their users’ personal information to third parties. But they do share certain personal data with their business partners.

What Kind of Information TikTok Collects?

Now that you know what TikTok does with your information, it’s natural to wonder what exactly they have access to. Some of that is expected, like age, username, password, location, and language.

And you’re probably aware that they own everything that you create on the app, all of your user content. They’ll have your payment information, as well as your phone’s and social media contacts. Put simply, TikTok will know everything about your phone.

The model, phone carrier, time zone, your keystroke pattern, etc. They can read all the messages from users on the platform. And if you sign in with another social media platform, they’ll collect your information from those services as well.

Can TikTok Record Without You Knowing

Is TikTok Safe?

No one knows what happens to your data once you release it to any app, including TikTok. Maybe it’s smart to suspect foul play from TikTok, given the legal issues they’ve encountered.

But it’s not like other social media apps are much better. If you want to be sure that TikTok isn’t recording you without you knowing, don’t install it on your phone.

Also, it’s important to be aware of what TikTok says in its privacy policy. And that users do their best to stay safe online.

Do you think that TikTok is recording you? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Anna Middleton

May 5, 2020

290 Articles Published