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Technology TikTok report says China didn't request user info in the first half of 2019

20:15  02 january  2020
20:15  02 january  2020 Source:   engadget.com

TikTok’s global social media takeover is starting to slow down

  TikTok’s global social media takeover is starting to slow down The Chinese social app just hit a big growth snagIn the two and a half years since it launched outside China, TikTok has seen astounding growth, adding more than 500 million users so far this year and closing in on 1.5 billion users in total. But according to new data from mobile analytics firm SensorTower, TikTok just experienced its first ever growth slowdown on a quarterly basis.

In its first-ever transparency report, TikTok claims it didn't receive any user information requests from the Chinese government in the first half of 2019. Instead, the majority of both legal and government-related requests came from India. In all, TikTok says it fielded 107 legal requests related to 143 Indian accounts, and provided authorities with user information in 47 percent of cases.

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Following India, TikTok received the most user information requests from American authorities. In the US, it got 79 requests related to 255 accounts, and went on to share information in 86 percent of cases. In third was Japan, where authorities requested information 35 times.

TikTok hits 1.5 billion downloads, report says

  TikTok hits 1.5 billion downloads, report says The app has had 614 million downloads so far just this year, according to mobile intelligence firm Sensor Tower. The social video app is currently the third most downloaded non-gaming app of the year, after WhatsApp at No. 1 and Messenger at No. 2, according to the firm. Facebook and Instagram rank in fourth and fifth place, respectively, the survey says.© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. TikTok is currently the third most downloaded non-gaming app of 2019, according to Sensor Tower.

"To foster candid dialogue essential to earning and maintaining trust, we are publishing our first transparency report this year, providing insight into how we responsibly respond to legal requests regarding user content," TikTok said. "Through regular updates, we aim to give our community the opportunity to better understand the actions we take on their behalf and evaluate us based on up-to-date information."

While it might be tempting to suggest ByteDance, the Chinese company that owns and operates TikTok, isn't being fully transparent, there's a more likely explanation for any missing Chinese stats. It's that TikTok isn't available in China. In its home country, ByteDance offers a separate but similar app called Douyin. According to a BuzzFeed News report published last year, all of ByteDance's TikTok servers are located outside of China.

TikTok reportedly restricts the reach of users with disabilities

  TikTok reportedly restricts the reach of users with disabilities Videos are tagged in special categories to prevent bullying, a report says.The moderation rule is reportedly called "Imagery depicting a subject highly vulnerable to cyberbullying.

The report comes as ByteDance attempts to convince American lawmakers that the Chinese government is using TikTok to spy on US citizens. Earlier this week, the US Army, following the Navy, banned the use of the app on government-issued phones out of cybersecurity concerns. ByteDance has reportedly considered selling its stake in TikTok as a way to address those concerns. In the meantime, TikTok says it will issue a transparency report for the second half of 2019 sometime in the next few months.

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TikTok fixed a flaw that could have exposed user accounts .
TikTok has been the subject of national security concerns for some time, and now things are set to get a little more uncomfortable for the company. According to cybersecurity company Check Point, the popular app had serious vulnerabilities that could have allowed hackers to obtain personal information and manipulate user data. The vulnerability could have resulted in TikTok users being sent messages containing malicious links. If clicked, attackers could take control of user accounts. Check Point also discovered a separate flaw, which allowed researchers to obtain personal information via TikTok's website.

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