TikTok tracked Android users without consent

TikTok tracked Android users without consent
The Android version of TikTok would have circumvented the precautions placed by Google in the operating system to protect privacy to exploit a loophole and collect information on users, data which then allowed the application and its manager (the Chinese ByteDance) to track the online activities without offering them any option to opt out. This is what the Wall Street Journal unveils today referring to an analysis conducted by experts.

TikTok: the MAC address of Android devices at ByteDance

More in detail to be saved without authorization it was the MAC address, identification of the device in use and therefore useful for marketing and advertising purposes, being able to act as a tool through which to convey targeted advertising messages based on personal preferences. According to what emerged, the practice would have been interrupted on 18 November 2019 after at least 15 months. Asked about this, the developer has not released specific communications, merely stating that it is committed to protecting the privacy of its subscribers and that the app is constantly updated to introduce improvements.

For its part, Google claims to have launched an investigation to shed light on what happened, but without providing details on the alleged Android flaw that would have allowed the data to be saved.

Apple, in 2013, made the MAC address of the iPhones unavailable to the third party applications. The Mountain View group did the same in 2018 with their operating system, but apparently left the possibility of doing so using a workaround. So he would have done from TikTok. The researchers argue that the problem is also present in the latest version of the platform.

the app and the parent company ByteDance are in these weeks in the center of a negotiation that will lead, presumably, to the sale of the social network. Between the parties concerned to do it right there is Microsoft . In the past few days are circulating the rumor also about an interest on the part of Twitter . The deadline imposed by the US administration is that of the 20th of September , otherwise it might take the ban.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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