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Unpopular opinion: Delete TikTok
TikTok was Designed to Collect Your Data (including Biometric data)
TL;DR TikTok was created to gather and store user data. TikTok steals information you wouldn’t give to anyone such as your keystrokes, location, passwords, and device settings. Data about who you are, where you spend time on - AND OFF - the app. Including what you search on the internet even from a different device on the same network, like your other computers and smart devices in your home. Lastly, the app controls what you see in your “feed” which causes you to “doom scroll” through a bunch of garbage tailored for you.
There are remedies a the end ,but basically just go outside and subscribe to Off Grid Empire.
What could they do with that data?
Well, there is no doubt that China - or rather the large enterprise connecting world governments - is pushing to control more of the world’s resources - and more of the world’s people. If they have data - location, search history, keystrokes - they can use it against anyone and implement a social credit score based on those data points (like they already did in China).
Ask the Uhygers in Xianjiang.
TikTok, like many social media apps/ sites, makes money off of advertising. The better they can do it, the more money they can make.
What data does Tiktok collect?
Well, alot. Even data you weren’t aware you had. All this is from their privacy policies on their site. This is broken into 3 sections on their terms and conditions:
Info You the Users “Choose” to give them - you are posting in the app
Info TikTok “Obtains” from “Other Sources”
Information they obtain Automatically
1. Info you Choose to Give TikTok:
Or should I say info you ‘surrender’ for the privilidge of using this cringe app.
Registration information which includes age, username, password, language, email and phone number.
Other profile information like your name your account information in your images
ALL of your content and comments aka user-generated content.
Content that is stored on your device's clipboard
Payment information buy card numbers and third-party payment information like PayPal…
They are also collecting as much information about you regarding your age, gender the likeness, and preferences…so they can DECIDE what you see on the feed.
2. Information obtained from other sources - this is when it gets deep
If you use other platforms like Facebook to sign up or login apply that acts as a virtual pathway for tiktok to grab information about you from those sites including list of friends, and all the above information.
They're also collecting…
They know you better than your closest friends. They know what you are searching for and looking at while you were alone...This is creepy. (and this is all social media/ internet btw)
3. What Tik-Tok collects automatically: Pay Attention
Device information - your IP address, who your mobile carrier is, your device model an operating system, the network you are on, identification information about your device, app and file names and types on your device including folders not in the app, keystroke patterns and rhythms, audio settings and connected audio devices.
AND THE WORST…
“We may also associate you with information collected from devices other than those you use to log-in to the Platform.”
READ THAT AGAIN.
And read all of their privacy policies here
In a nutshell:
It collects sh*tloads information about users
It tracks users
It tracks and collects data from devices on the same wifi network as you
Below blurb is from wired.co which I think does a good job of summing it up:
TikTok can gather information when you arrive on the site even if you aren’t signed up, via cookies and other trackers. Once you’ve created an account, the social network collects data about your activities and preferences based on the videos you watch.
TikTok knows the device you are using, your location, IP address, search history, the content of your messages, what you’re viewing and for how long. It also collects device identifiers to track your interactions with advertisers. TikTok “infers” factors such as your age range, gender and interests based on the information it has about you. In the US, TikTok can collect biometric information including face and voiceprints.
This data is “extremely valuable” for TikTok and its advertisers, says Morgan Wright, chief security advisor at security company SentinelOne. “If someone watches a video until the end and gives it a like, TikTok can serve up tailored ads based on that. Capturing sentiment with this level of accuracy is harder on other platforms.”
Link to full Article: https://www.wired.co.uk/article/tiktok-data-privacy
If this isn’t enough to make you buy a VPN and a cabin in the woods, then let’s keep going. Tin foil hats on for the remainder of the article, please.
Read That Again: Biometric Data
You know that little fingerprint scanner you use on your laptop? Or that facial recognition to open your phone? Or the cute little face swap feature in the app? Or how about those microphones everyone thought was a good idea (alexa? siri? google?)
Those are more useful for collecting data than they are for searching the internet.
Why would any business want to store your face? or your voice?
Facial recognition and voice recognition, of course. The more data you have, the more control - and manipulation - you have over a populace.
For Example: In the horrible camps China is running with the Uhgyer populace, they currently use audio and video devices in every room where prisoners are. Storing EVERY MOVE and FACE they make and every word they say with a devestating effect on their psyche.
That is control at the highest level. And it seems to be happening slowly on a large scale. Instead of the Government or state-sponsored actors forcing cameras and microphones into everyones’ homes, we are buying them and installing them ourselves!
OK well what the hell do we do about it? 3 things:
Educate yourself, friends, and family - the internet is a powerful drug using media to capture our attention and influence decisions. It is YOUR responsibility to understand what you are letting into your home. Read sources like wired.co and of cource, their terms and conditions.
Actively spend less time on screens and join a community with similar goals (weekly newsletter)
Check out tech services to secure passwords, block trackers, and protect your data like Disconnect and duck duck go
If something is free that means you are the product. Go outside, get some skills, build a community of likeminded outdoors people.