TikTok has been facing concerns over the way it handles users’ data. The Chinese social media company has strong ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and operates data centers within China. Government officials have accused the company of freely giving user data to the CCP, which it may be obligated to do, given that its data centers are located in China.
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Now, the company is planning on opening two new data centers in Europe in the hope doing so will ease concerns over how they handle user data. Regulators and governments have questioned the company over its practices and what data it shares with third parties such as the CCP. TikTok executives have said the CCP cannot access personal user data.
But the company has been caught using keyloggers and is on the list of social media companies that use the most trackers in its software. TikTok is also actively collecting users’ biometric data; what they use it for is unclear.
Reuters report: The short video-sharing app, owned by China’s ByteDance, aims to expand its European data storage, TikTok’s general manager for operations in Europe, Rich Waterworth, said in a blog post.
“We are at an advanced stage of finalizing a plan for a second data center in Ireland with a third-party service provider, in addition to the site announced last year,” he said.
“We’re also in talks to establish a third data center in Europe to further complement our planned operations in Ireland. European TikTok user data will begin migrating this year, continuing into 2024,” Waterworth said.
TikTok has an average of 125 million monthly active users in the European Union; this number is from August 2022 to January 2023.
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