Lauren Godwin

Tiktok is Collecting Your Face and Voice Data

*deletes app*

Lauren Godwin

Earlier this week, Tiktok quietly changed its privacy policy, and it may be cause for concern. 

The Chinese social media app introduced a new section that states that the app will start collecting “biometric identifiers and biometric information,” including “faceprints and voiceprints.” This means any data from any video uploaded to the platform will be collected by the app. 

However, Tiktok stated that it will ask for “required permissions,” aka consent wherever required by law.  

The new privacy policy section is pretty extensive. The data to be collected by the app include everything “such as identifying the objects and scenery that appear, the existence and location within an image of face and body features and attributes, the nature of the audio, and the text of the words spoken in your User Content.”

According to TedCrunch, which was the first to spot the changes made by the social media network, the data to be collected according to updated privacy policy is likely to be used for advertising. 

The tech media outlet states that the collection of biometric data is most concerning, though. 

We may collect biometric identifiers and biometric information as defined under US laws, such as faceprints and voiceprints, from your User Content. Where required by law, we will seek any required permissions from you prior to any such collection,” it reads. 

But as TedCrunch put it, the statement is vague and does not specify why Tiktok is collecting the data in the first place. What ‘faceprints’ and ‘voiceprints’ mean are still up for debate, and the social media app is not offering an explanation. 

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