Should we be worried about TikTok?

The popular video-sharing app is, once again, subject to claims that its Chinese parent company ByteDance might share user data. Both the FBI and Federal Communications Commission have warned the company could share browsing history, location and biometric identifiers with the Chinese government.

The Chinese government implemented a law in 2017 which required companies to give the government any personal data relevant to the country’s national security. While there’s no evidence that TikTok have provided them with any data, it remains an ongoing concern.

New Parent & Bay app

Perhaps that’s why TikTok is continuing to focus on expanding its e-commerce presence online, and extending to more product ranges. This week, the app launched ‘Parent & Bay’ products to the TikTok Shop UK. New parents can now pick products from some of the UK’s best known baby brands using the new product category.

Nursery furniture, weaning sets, car seats and prams from well known, trusted brands, can all be purchased entirely on the TikTok app – an added convenience for parents – or a good way for the app to gain more confidence from its users?

Start fresh on TikTok

TikTok has also rolled out a new feature this week enabling people to refresh their ‘For You Feed’. This gives users the chance to revive their recommendations if they no longer feel relevant. The option to start fresh on TikTok is designed to help people discover more content, creators, communities, and products using For You Feeds. If users don’t feel their feeds are relevant anymore, they can enable this feature on the app which will allow them to view content on their For You Feed as if they have just signed up again. The recommendation system will bring up more relevant content based on the users’ new interactions.

Why does this matter?

Despite TikTok working hard to reassure the public it is a trusted app that is looking out for its users, providing them with new products and endeavouring to offer the best user experience it can, bans of the app across the globe are continuing.

On Thursday, British authorities announced they were banning TikTok from government-issued phones on security grounds – a similar move to the EU’s executive branch who temporarily banned TikTok from employee phones. Denmark and Canada have also announced efforts to block the app on government-issued phones, while Congress the US armed forces and more than half of US states have already banned the app on official devices.

TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew will testify next week before the House energy and commerce committee about the company’s privacy and data-security practices, as well as its relationship with the Chinese government.

Share this post

Sign up to our Newsletter for more content like this

By signing up you agree to our Privacy Policy