TikTok Violates iPhone Users' Privacy

According to Netzpolitik.org, the TikTok app can read data that users have copied to the clipboard on iPhones.

TikTok Violates iPhone Users' Privacy

According to Netzpolitik.org, the TikTok app can read data that users have copied to the clipboard on iPhones. The data in question can consist of things like private messages, passwords, or links.

In February of this year, security researchers had previously noted that apps which have access to the device's clipboard present serious privacy issues. In beta tests of the iOS 14 clipboard, testers noticed that TikTok gathers data from the clipboard every one to three keystrokes. 

According to a spokesperson at TikTok, the reasoning behind this continuous data harvesting is so that the app can combat spam and duplicate comments. The app contrasts text from a user input, such as a comment, with that of text on the clipboard while the user is in the process of typing that comment. Supposedly, the content read from the clipboard is never shared with the TikTok server, although this is unconfirmed.

HowtoGeek pointed out that all apps have the ability to read data from the clipboard. The difference in this case is that with the iOS 14 update, your phone now notifies you when an app is reading data off of the clipboard, and thus more users are noticing.

As a result of the publicity surrounding this issue, TikTok announced that they have proposed a new version of the app to the Apple store in order to remove this problem.