Australian “Cyber cop,” Susan McLean told Daily Mail Australia that the social media sensation TikTok is “not safe” for kids due to grooming, bullying, and privacy fears, and she believes that the app is a “magnet for pedophiles”.
The app is now even more popular than Snapchat, and one only has to be 13 years old to sign up. To add to that, anyone can be contacted by anyone unless they make their profile private. To add to that, anyone can request to look at their videos and photos and even pretend to be another child.
McLean, a former Victorian police cyber safety specialist of 27 years, said that TikTok is not a safe app and there are many concerns. She added that any app that allows communication can be used by predators, and she thinks that TikTok has been known to fail to remove suspicious accounts, even after being warned.
She explained that TikTok does not have the same safety sessions as some of the more well-known apps, and pedophiles like to watch kids sing and dance so they can take the videos and share them.
TikTok explained on its website to parents that they can set their child’s profile to private, but it admits that “profile information including profile photo, username, and bio, will be visible to all users even with a private account”.
The website encourages parents to “counsel” their children not to reveal personal information such as an address, phone number, and age on their profile.