UK could impose multimillion-dollar fine on TikTok

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UK could impose multimillion-dollar fine on TikTok

The UK said on Monday it could impose a multimillion-dollar fine on TikTok after the government found that the short-form video platform may have violated children's privacy.

The data privacy regulators in the UK found that TikTok may have breached the UK law by processing data of kids under 13 without parental consent over the course of two years from May 2018 to July 2020, which could result in a potential fine of 27 million, or about 29 million.

In a legal document notifying TikTok of the possible fine, the UK Information Commissioner's Office said TikTok may have processed sensitive categories of data without legal grounds, and may have failed to provide information transparently to its users.

Information Commissioner John Edwards said that children should be able to learn and experience the digital world, but with proper data privacy protections. Our provisional view is that TikTok fell short of meeting that requirement, because companies providing digital services have a legal duty to put those protections in place. In a statement, TikTok said: While we respect the role of the ICO in safeguarding privacy in the UK, we disagree with the preliminary views and intend to respond to the ICO in due course. The ICO did not identify the types of sensitive data TikTok may have mishandled under UK law, but in general the country places higher obligations on data that reveals a person's racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious beliefs, health status, sexual orientation, and more.