January 29, 2023

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Popular social media app TikTok slap by US lawsuits over child safety, security concerns

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One of popular social media app TikTok, on Wednesday, December 7 was reportedly slapped by a pair of lawsuits in the United States, particularly in the state of Indiana, accusing the China-owned application of fabricating claims over safety for children.

The US had made multiple accusations against TikTok claiming that the extremely popular app is a national security threat and a conduit for spying by China.

“The TikTok app is a malicious and menacing threat unleashed on unsuspecting Indiana consumers by a Chinese company that knows full well the harms it inflicts on users,” said Attorney General Todd Rokita in a statement.

Part of the complaints claimed said that TikTok algorithms served up “abundant content depicting alcohol, tobacco, and drugs; sexual content, nudity, and suggestive themes” to users as young as 13.

The State of Indiana reportedly sued TikTok for allegedly deceiving customers into believing that “reams of highly sensitive data and personal information” were protected from the Chinese government.

But in a statement, a TikTok spokesperson did not comment specifically on the case but said “the safety, privacy and security of our community is our top priority.”

The Tik-Tok spokesperson also said “We build youth well-being into our policies, limit features by age, empower parents with tools and resources, and continue to invest in new ways to enjoy content based on age-appropriateness or family comfort,”

In the United States, TikTok is facing a growing front of opposition with several states. Even the US military is apparently banning its use on government devices.

On Wednesday, the State of Texas became the latest state to do so, calling for “aggressive action” against TikTok.

The highly popular app is often singled out for its alleged connections to the Beijing government with fears that China is able to use TikTok’s data to track and coerce users around the world.