TikTok pledges to comply with Dutch & European data privacy rules, says state secretary
TikTok has plans to comply with Dutch and European data privacy regulations, and intends to address the concerns of the Cabinet and the Tweede Kamer, said Alexandra van Huffelen, the state secretary handling digitalization issues in the Netherlands. A majority of the Tweede Kamer voiced concern last month, saying Dutch users' data can end up in the hands of the Chinese government. Members from the coalition party ChristenUnie have also called for a total ban on the app due to non-compliance.
The Chinese parent company behind the app acknowledged they are not fully compliant, but are working to resolve the problem, Van Huffelen told reporters before the weekly Cabinet meeting on Friday. "I think it is not only important that they comply with all the rules, but above all that they prove it. And we will keep a close eye on that in the near future."
Van Huffelen said she spoke with representatives from the company earlier in the day. They intend to draw up a point-by-point plan about how they will do a better job handling data, and intends to provide access to its algorithms. Van Huffelen said that the government will not use TikTok as a platform to reach the public until the app is compliant.
TikTok boasts 3.5 million users in the Netherlands. The social media video platform is the most popular with children in the country.
This is of particular concern to the state secretary, who is concerned that children become addicted to the app, and view videos that they should not see. She advised parents to be vigilant about how their children spend time on the internet.
"I think it is very important that they keep a close eye on what their children are doing online. Because we know that the protection of these types of platforms is not perfect at the moment. I would say, make sure that your children do not have access to videos that you don't want them to see."
She also pointed to the Europe's Digital Services Act, which will gradually take effect over the next two years. The law requires platforms with over 45 million EU users to do a better job of content moderation, keep harmful content out of sight, take down illegal content, and implement age ratings and restrictions.