South Korea slapped video-sharing app TikTok with a hefty fine, said a BBC report.
The app reportedly mishandled children’s data in South Korea.
This happened amid growing concerns about users’ privacy in the peninsular nation.
The Korea Communications Commission (KCC) gave the company a 186m won fine (roughly $155,000).
The KCC is Korea’s media watchdog.
A Drop In The Bucket
The report estimated that the fine is just a drop in the bucket compared to TikTok’s annual income.
“The fine is roughly 3% of the social media platform’s yearly revenue,” said the report.
It is an app that allows users to create 15-second videos, soundtracked by music clips.
According to a Bloomberg report, TikTok owner ByteDance made a net profit of $3 billion last year.
The same report said it is the fast-growing company that more than doubled its revenue.
Conversely, in 2018, TikTok reported revenue of $7.4 billion then it reaches up to $17 billion by 2019.
Besides, TikTok has a cash pile of $6 billion, said the report.
1,000 Violations Per Month
TikTok has an average violation of 1,000 per month, said the KCC investigation.
The investigation that began last year, revealed it collected more than 6,000 records involving children for over six months.
This is a complete violation of the local privacy laws.
TikTok, a Chinese firm, also failed to inform users that they also transfer personal data overseas.
Also, KCC claimed its collected data of children under 14 years old without the consent of legal guardians.
TikTok Talks Back
The video-sharing app giant talked back and denied any wrongdoing.
TikTok said it was “deeply committed” to meet the requirements of the law, said the report.
A spokesperson of the app said:
“We hold ourselves to very high standards on data privacy, and work to continuously improve and strengthen our standards.”
However, this is not TikTok’s only fine or violation.
In February last year, the US imposed a $5.7 million fine against TikTok.
Authorities claimed Tiktok failed in protecting children’s data privacy in the US.
The Federal Trade Commission said the TikTok “knowingly hosted content published by underage users.”
The International Ban
The Chinese-made app is facing an international ban from both sides of the world.
India banned the platform after an escalating tension with China stemming from a border dispute.
About 20 Indian soldiers were reportedly died due to the dispute.
The US, which is currently in a trade dispute with China, is considering banning Chinese apps.
This includes TikTok.