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Girl, 12, is suing TikTok for alleged misuse of personal data and violations of data protection law


The 12-year-old girl is suing social media giant TikTok for alleged misuse of personal data and violations of data protection laws

  • A girl who cannot be identified is suing TikTok on behalf of children who use the app
  • She claims abuse of personal data and violations of the data protection act
  • The challenge is directed against companies that are supposedly behind TikTok and its "predecessor" Musical.ly

Social media giant TikTok is facing a legal challenge posed on behalf of all the children who use the hugely popular video sharing app.

A 12-year-old girl from London, who cannot be identified, plans to file a claim for damages for alleged misuse of personal information and violations of data protection laws.

The challenge is directed against the companies that are supposedly behind TikTok and its "predecessor" app Musical.ly. The girl is also seeking the deletion of her data.

According to a ruling by the High Court published on Wednesday, the companies allegedly "misused the applicant's private information and processed the applicant's personal data" in violation of EU and UK data protection laws.

Social media giant TikTok is facing a legal challenge posed on behalf of all children who use the hugely popular video sharing app (archive image).

England's Children's Commissioner Anne Longfield intends to bring a "representative" lawsuit on behalf of all other under 16s who use the Chinese app, Warby Justice was told at a Supreme Court hearing yesterday.

At the remote hearing, lawyers for the 12-year-old said TikTok, which has reportedly been downloaded over two billion times worldwide, is illegally processing children's personal information "to generate advertising revenue from corporate customers."

Her lawyer, Charles Ciumei QC, said in written contributions: & # 39; The personal data in question is used in an algorithm that analyzes the user's preferences in order to tailor the content presented to him so that it captures and retains his attention.

"This in turn encourages the use of the app. Although the terms of use of the app state that it is not intended for anyone under the age of 13, it is clear that a large number of users are under that age."

In the brief hearing, Mr Ciumei asked Mr Justice Warby to grant his client anonymity before formally submitting her application, arguing that identifying her posed a real risk of negative impact on both the applicant's online presence and potential her family as well as her daily life ”.

In his decision granting anonymity to the child, the judge said, “I readily accept that this action is likely to attract a lot of attention.

A 12-year-old girl from London who cannot be identified plans to file a claim for compensation for alleged misuse of personal data and violations of data protection laws (archive image)

A 12-year-old girl from London who cannot be identified plans to file a claim for compensation for alleged misuse of personal data and violations of data protection laws (archive image)

& # 39; It is a direct challenge to the practices of a very well known and influential social media platform.

"It is reasonable to assume that some of this attention would be on the applicant if his identity were known."

He said the allegation proposed by the girl "involves serious criticism of key aspects of how the platform works," adding, "Resistance from some TikTok users is only to be expected.

"It is fair to expect that such opposition will be strongly worded."

Last night, a TikTok spokesperson said: & # 39; Privacy and security are TikTok's top priorities and we have solid policies, processes and technology in place to keep all users, especially our younger users, safe.

"Since this motion was filed without notice, we only became aware of the motion and the judgment of the High Court today and are currently examining its effects."

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