TikTok has updated its security settings for users under 18, strengthening the protection of their privacy, the social network said on Wednesday.

“Today we’re announcing changes for users under age 18 aimed at driving higher default standards for user privacy and safety,” TikTok said in a statement.

In particular, the accounts of TikTok users between the ages of 13 and 15 will automatically become private. Videos posted on private accounts can only be viewed by approved followers, giving underage users an opportunity to make choices about what and with whom they want to share their content.

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The network also introduced an automatic restriction on commenting on videos that belong to people under 16, allowing minor users to choose between options “Friends” or “No One” for their account, and removing the option to receive comments from all users.

TikTok’s Younger Users version, which was designed specifically for a younger audience, signed a partnership with Common Sense Networks, through which additional guidance on the appropriateness of content for children under 13 will be provided.

In April 2020, the TikTok video app disabled direct messaging for users under the age of 16 and introduced a new set of parental controls that allows parents to make choices on screen time management, restricted mode and direct messages for their children.


In February 2019, TikTok, which was known back then as Musical.ly. was fined $5.7 million by the Federal Trade Commission for violating US children’s privacy laws.