The proposed settlement, billed as one of the largest privacy-related payments in history, includes 89 million US users, some of them as young as six.
TikTok collected a massive amount of information from account holders without consent, including biometric data such as race, gender, and age, and even information from draft videos that were not publicly shared on the platform.
TikTok initially found itself facing 21 proposed class-action federal lawsuits, which were subsequently merged into a single, multi-district class action lawsuit in the Northern District of Illinois.
The lawsuit alleged that the company violated federal laws, including the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and the Video Privacy Protection Act, as well as the privacy laws in Illinois and California.
TikTok said: It does not agree with the allegations, but decided to settle the case to avoid prolonging the long litigation battle and in order to focus Her efforts are to build a safe and enjoyable experience for her community.
The settlement, which is awaiting court approval, also dictates that TikTok stop tracking and storing biometric information, including facial characteristics, and collecting GPS or clipboard data.
It also committed to cutting off US user data overseas and promised to stop collecting data from draft videos.
One of the attorneys involved in the lawsuit said: “This is one of the largest compromises ever achieved in the Vital Consumer Information Privacy Act case.”
He added: It also represents one of the largest privacy-related collective actions settlement, and serves as a reminder to companies of the importance of privacy and holding them accountable for violating consumer rights.
TikTok has struggled with multiple security investigations and consumer law complaints across Europe and was previously fined $ 5.7 million from the Federal Trade Commission for child privacy violations.