You Should Modify Your TikTok Privacy Preferences Immediately

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Photo: Ascannio (Shutterstock) – Don’t give TikTok permission to steal your personal information any longer. TikTok is a lot of fun. TikTok has an addicting quality about it. TikTok is…a little risky? There has been a great deal of discussion concerning the app’s privacy and security, especially because its parent firm, ByteDance, is based in Beijing, China. The previous White House administration came dangerously close to banning the app from the United States market. There are some settings on TikTok that can be tweaked to provide a greater level of privacy to users. I’m not sure how much of my TikTok data is being siphoned off to unknowing governments, but I do know that there are some settings that can be tweaked to provide a greater level of privacy on TikTok.

Let’s be honest: the vast majority of free applications (as well as many expensive ones) exist solely to profit from your data (all eyes on you, Meta). Because of this, it should come as no surprise that the free app TikTok has no regard for keeping your experience private. One component of the program, on the other hand, strikes me as unusually aggressive: Contact exchange is encouraged.

TikTok is really interested in spreading the word about your account to everyone you know. From a commercial standpoint, this makes perfect sense: the software wants to attract more users. I, on the other hand, am not a fan. TikTok is not something I use for the community. I’m here to enjoy some amusing vids. If I have a video clip that I wish to share with others, I do so outside of TikTok’s platform. I have no incentive to use the app to connect with folks I already know.

When it comes to “sharing” your account with others, TikTok goes above and beyond what you may expect from a social media app. The social media corporation wants to convey your personal information to not just your contacts, but also those who know the people you know, as well as anyone who open or send links to you from their own accounts on their platform. That doesn’t sit well with me, and it probably shouldn’t sit well with you as well, either.

In this section, we’ll look at how to fix the app’s privacy and security issues by altering a few settings.

You may rise to the top of TikTok by promoting your account to others

Using the hamburger menu symbol in the top-right corner, hit the Profile tab, then select Settings & privacy > Privacy > Uncheck the “Suggest to everyone and their mother” option. Encourage people to check out your page. Disable “Contacts,” “Facebook friends,” “People with common connections,” and “People who open or send links to you” from this point forth.

For the record, I’ve notified the app a thousand times that I do not want my account information shared with anyone. No matter whatever device I used to access the app, all four selections were still available to me. I’m not sure why. Sneaky.

Disable contact and Facebook friend syncing

“Wait, didn’t I just disable these options?” if you’re wondering. Please don your seatbelts. You’ll find “Sync contacts and Facebook pals” just below “Suggest your account to others.” TikTok may now scan your phone’s contacts and Facebook pals to see if there are any new folks to add to your lists with this new feature. Fun!

To determine if one of these options is enabled for your account, just check this page. In addition, if you have saved any contacts or Facebook friends, you’ll have the choice to “Remove contacts” or “Remove Facebook friends.” It’s a clue that no contacts are linked if the options are faint.

Is this what I’ve been through? Even my “Remove from Facebook” option was dimmed because of this. “Remove contacts” seemed to be red, meaning TikTok had access to my contact list. You can bet I got rid of them.

Verify your identity by enabling two-factor authentication

Let’s take a break from TikTok’s pushy social connections and look at an option that will simply keep your account safe from hackers: Two-factor authentication (2FA), a robust security tool, is a must-have. To access an account, you must first enter your username and password. 2FA requires a second form of authentication, such as a text message code or confirmation from a trusted device, in order to log in. If you haven’t activated this feature yet, now is the time.

In order to begin, navigate to the following locations: Preferences > Security and login > Two-step authentication There are three options for confirming your identity: SMS, email, or by entering your password. You will be able to use 2FA as soon as you establish a connection using the methods of verification you select.

Disable the microphone and camera permissions

If you’re anything like me, you use TikTok only for the purpose of perusing other people’s uploaded videos. Consequently, the app does not need permission to use your phone’s camera or microphone. It’s likely that most of us will grant the app access to our personal information regardless.

Our cameras and microphones don’t show any signs of TikTok eavesdropping on our activities. On the other hand, why should we trust an app that has a spotty privacy record?

On iOS, these rights may be disabled from the Settings app on your iPhone. Once you’ve selected TikTok, you can turn off the microphone and camera by tapping the toggles next to them. Activate “Don’t Allow” for “Camera” and “Microphone” in Android’s Settings > Apps > TikTok > Permissions menus.

Make certain that you’ve also blocked the ability to add contacts in settings

TikTok, you must never leave the house without your contacts. It’s possible even after you’ve gone through all the settings in the app, your phone’s operating system may still allow TikTok to access your contacts. It’s subtle, but TikTok has us.

In the same place where you disabled “Contacts,” you may prevent TikTok from having access to your friends and family.

Refrain from allowing tracking (iOS)

Apps can no longer follow a user’s every step thanks to iOS 14.5. All of these applications had to seek for your permission to monitor you after an upgrade to your iPhone. If you don’t want to contribute to Mark Zuckerberg’s financial worth by allowing these applications to follow you, you may choose to decline these rights.

As a result of being exposed to these pop-ups so many times, you may have mistakenly selected “yes.” The toggle next to “Allow Tracking” in iOS Settings > TikTok must be deactivated for TikTok to monitor you. TikTok users may uncheck “Allow Apps to Request to Track” in their settings, but everyone else can enable it by going to Settings > Privacy > Tracking.