The viral video making application, TikTok, madly loved and used by teenagers got itself in hot water after a cybersecurity company discovered the app’s security loopholes.
What Made TikTok so Famous?
That is right; we are about to addresses the elephant in the room for the unaware out there.
The social network where users, who are mostly teenagers, make and share videos for fun has reached a success point few people imagined it could achieve. The core purpose of using the application is to create lip-syncing videos – including comedic skits, viral app challenges and more.
Nevertheless, soon marketers realized that the platform is advantageous for digital marketing as well. After realizing its efficiency at reaching and attracting the younger demographic, marketers started building their digital marketing strategies differently by including TikTok in it.
TikTok, on the other hand, started earning global recognition and became the most downloaded application in 2018. However, with fame comes darkness. Here the darkness for the application became security loopholes.
Is TikTok Secure?
With over 150 markets and used in 75 languages, the viral application showed some alarming security vulnerabilities in the last few months.
The Check Point Research teams, a cybersecurity company in Israel, found some major and multiple security risks within the application. The vulnerabilities discovered by the research team highlighted the following things that attackers would likely do in the application after illegally accessing it:
- Get a proper hold of TikTok accounts to manipulate user content
- Delete already published TikTok videos
- Publish unauthorized and malicious video content
- Publish “hidden” and “private” videos publically on the platform
- Make private and hidden user information public
The Checkpoint research even informed the TikTok application developers regarding the above-mentioned vulnerabilities. The developers and company confirmed an adequate solution to these security risks.
Another security blunder regarding TikTok happened recently. According to the research of Research Point on TikTok security flaws, some serious security vulnerabilities in the application can allow the hackers to sweep into users’ data.
The cybersecurity company of Israel, in its research, claimed that the security flaw in the TikTok application could not only allow hackers to access users’ data but also help them in manipulating users’ personal information and exploiting their personal information.
While the company fixed all the vulnerabilities addressed by the research company, as per their claim, the research raised a finger on the application’s security system. This weakness of the security system of the application would have caused serious damage to users’ accounts and information. The flaw, if not addressed, would have allowed hackers to send the TikTok users certain messages that would carry malicious links, as per the research.
The plan was to send the links, which upon clicking lets hackers have access to the hacked TikTok user’s account. Then the hacker would gain access to private TikTok videos of the users or upload videos themselves.
Now that we are aware of the vulnerabilities of the much-loved video app, we think the next part of this write up is important for TikTok users and their safety from hackers. Therefore, here are some of the ways you can ensure security on TikTok:
Keep Your Account Private
First thing first, keep your TikTok account on private.
Having a secure and reliable internet connection, like Windstream internet, is not enough to have a safe and secure experience in the social media applications world. With several reported privacy breaching activities on social media platforms, internet users should remain vigilant in terms of a potential cybersecurity threat.
By keeping your account private on TikTok you can make sure that the video is only seen by the creator i.e. you and not by anyone else on the platform. Moreover, you can also deny and approve the limit of direct message to followers only through this setting.
Not to forget that even in private setting your account profile, username and bio will remain visible to every user on the platform.
Not only the application creators but also keeping the platform secure for users is a responsibility of the TikTok community as well. The community includes the TikTok users.
By reporting content that lacks in following the platform community guidelines users can force application owners to take notice of such content and content creators.
Even after achieving abrupt success and recognition, the platform creators have not established proper guidelines for the protection of personal information of users on platform. However, with limited options mentioned above users can ensure the safety of their video content and account access on TikTok application.