Is TikTok dangerous for your privacy and security?

Deepak Gupta April 18, 2022
Updated 2022/04/18 at 2:09 PM

TikTok has been at the forefront of countless rumors about privacy breaches and security issues. It was banned in India, and by the US Army and Navy for threats to national security. Despite being an interesting and entertaining social network, does it have a bad side?

Find out why TikTok is dangerous for your privacy and security.

TikTok is a social network free that allows users to share short videos that vary between 15 and 60 seconds, and in some cases may exceed. Despite looking harmless, this application has a not-so-nice side.

Why is this social network dangerous?

Similar to most social networks, TikTok collects data and information from users. Some people find it "easy" to accept some intrusions when using free services. However, TikTok is often accused of taking things too far, representing serious security and privacy risks for its users.

This has led both private companies and some government departments to ban their employees from installing and using the application on their work devices. And Amazon was one of the first companies to enact a ban on workers, although later have withdrawn their decision.

But what are the dangers we are subject to as TikTok users?

1. TikTok is rife with security vulnerabilities

In recent years, security researchers have found multiple security vulnerabilities in the application. And since TikTok has access to a lot of personal information, has become the favorite app of many hackers.

One way hackers can take advantage of TikTok is by sending users a text message that allows them to access their accounts. Another is to take advantage of the fact that the app use an insecure HTTP binding instead of the more secure option, HTTPS.

This allows cybercriminals to manipulate users' feeds and display unsolicited content that can be misleading or disruptive, especially for the younger ones.

2. TikTok collects a lot of data

This may not bother many people unless you are a privacy enthusiast. However, TikTok's search for data collection is not limited to collecting your preferences, following what type of content you like.

In its privacy policy, TikTok states that it collects "information you provide in the context of composing, sending or receiving messages". Focusing on the use of the word "composition", TikTok doesn't just collect data and messages that you share using the app, but the content you created or wrotebut not shared.

TikTok also takes advantage of all the access permissions it gives you, collecting information about your smartphone model, screen resolution, current OS, mobile number, email address, location, and even contact list.

While it is important to note that there is no clear evidence that TikTok shares user data, at its core, the social networking company has us.

3. Long-term repercussions

Regular use of TikTok, whether as a consumer or content creator, increases your digital footprint. This in itself poses major risks, such as being more prone to phishing and stalking attacks. This is an important reason why should care about your digital footprint.

Using TikTok could impede your work in the field you have chosen, for example those that require a high degree of security such as high level government occupations - they will not be satisfied if a foreign country has access to highly personal and detailed information about yes.

4. The impact of TikTok in the future

The hundreds of hours of video that individuals upload of themselves is a gold mine for artificial intelligence and machine learning development. This isn't necessarily a good thing. The reason TikTok is bad boils down to its future dangers, perhaps worse than the current ones..

In its current state, facial recognition and deeply fake algorithms do not pose serious threats to users. However, with this amount of high quality data, the future can also be gloomy for everyone.

Be careful what you share on TikTok

When using an application or service, please remember that privacy policies and security regulations may change at any time, leaving your data exposed and your device vulnerable.

You should avoid trusting and over-sharing with apps that don't value security and privacy.

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