TikTok May Not Be Secure


Gracie Burgess, Staff Writer

In late 2019, and early 2020, TikTok really boomed. With many people not having anything to do while in quarantine and isolation, many people found themselves turning to TikTok. People can create and post short, vertical video clips of them dancing, cooking, singing, playing sports, telling a story, etc.

While the app is a good way for many people to stay connected and be intertwined with the world around them, it can also be harmful. For example, there have been many dangerous trends like the Benadryl challenge. This is where you ingest a large portion of the medication to create the effects of being high and then record your reaction. However, some points on TikTok are more negative and harmful than the Benadryl challenge.

TikTok is owned by a Chinese company that is being used to spy on the app’s users. Major news sources such as Fox News, The Washington Post, CNN and USA Today just to name a few, are encouraging users to delete their TikTok profiles and delete the app. TikTok is owned by ByteDance which, by Chinese law, is required to give all information collected to the Chinese government. This can cause a lot of information to be at risk.

Many users are not aware of the harm that can be caused by TikTok being on their devices. The app has access to any and all information stored on the user’s device on which the app is installed. By having this widespread access, users are putting themselves in danger. While many feel we are in an impending war with China, this is just one other way for China to learn more about the happenings here in the United States.

By keeping yourself and your private information safe, it is also one step closer to keeping our country safe. I personally deleted TikTok last July. Since then, I have also been able to see changes in my life. I have more free time. Instead of scrolling through TikTok for hours each day, I have more time to focus on myself, my schoolwork, my career and other things I enjoy. While some feel that TikTok is a good de-stressor for them, there are also other platforms where users can enjoy a similar feel to TikTok.

With the boom of TikTok, Instagram also introduced its form of TikTok, Instagram Reels. This was a marketing technique that allowed them to compete with the growing population on the TikTok app. Instagram leaders noticed that many of their users were joining the newer app and spending less time on Instagram. Instagram users have been primarily active on Reels and have been using it as another platform to TikTok to help them grow their profiles and following.

While TikTok is a fun app to be able to destress on, get a good laugh, and connect with the world around you, it is also important to have security and peace of mind that your information will be safe. With the rise of TikTok, information stored on the app may not be as safe as you once thought.