Chinese-backed social media giant TikTok has been accused of “excessive data harvesting” by cybersecurity firm Internet 2.0.
In a new report, the Australian-based firm found the popular music video app tracked the location of users every hour, accessed calendars and contacts, and also conducted “device mapping”—tracking what other apps were installed on a person’s phone.
“TikTok has access to contacts, and if the user denies access, it continuously requests for access until the user gives access,” the report stated.
“The application retrieves all other running applications on the phone. TikTok also gathers all applications that are installed on the phone. In theory, this information can provide a realistic diagram of your phone.”
Tom Kenyon, director at Internet 2.0 said TikTok harvested “more data than just about any other social media app.”
“If you’re a government person with sensitive contacts like … the prime minister’s phone number, or you might just be an important part of defense … they can know who your contacts are, who you’re sending texts to, they can know what devices you’re connecting with …” he told 4BC radio.