The safety and privacy of children and young people on social networks is an issue that many nations around the world are concerned with. Ireland’s Data Protection Commission (DPC) has fined the social network TikTok for violating children’s privacy.
We currently find all kinds of users on social networks, and many of these platforms in particular have a large number of children among their audience.
In this context, the National Survey on Audiovisual Content Consumption by the Federal Telecommunications Institute (IFT) revealed that the social network preferred by children in Mexico in 2023 is YouTube, with 55 percent of use, thanks to its average viewing time of 2.4 hours for any minor subject; In second place is ByteDance’s Chinese network, TikTok, with 49 percent. And at less than 40 percent, Facebook is a social network that has failed to reach younger audiences.
According to TikTok data, the platform’s users were predominantly Gen Z in its early days, but now its growth is standing out among the more adult demographic. “Over the last year, usage of this app has increased by 36% and the greatest growth continues to be among users aged 16-34. This profile usually uses an above-average number of social networks; more precisely, more than 30 percent,” he specifies.
Multan to TikTok in Ireland
It was announced that TikTok had been fined €345 million after Ireland’s Data Protection Commission (DPC) pointed out that the company had breached children’s privacy.
According to the complaint, it is noted that minors’ data was processed as part of age verification and privacy settings.
It was also announced that the fine was imposed under the data protection law of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
The GDPR, for its part, specifies the rules that companies must adhere to when handling data. Therefore, the DPC found that TikTok was not sufficiently transparent with children about their privacy settings and raised questions about how they processed their data.
Based on this information, an investigation is underway to determine whether the Chinese social network illegally transferred data from the EU to the Asian country.
After the fine was announced, a spokesman said: “I respectfully disagree with the decision, particularly the amount of the fine imposed.”
“The criticism focuses on features and settings that were introduced three years ago and that we changed long before the investigation began, such as setting all accounts under 16 to private by default,” he said.
It is known that the fine imposed relates to 2020 and that TikTok has taken several measures in subsequent years to make it more compliant.
This social network continues to attract criticism around the world, where countries such as the United States have also initiated investigations into the privacy that this platform registers with its users.