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TikTok’s mounting privacy issues are unlikely to hurt its ad business

July 08, 2019 / Kerry Flynn

TikTok is being heavily scrutinized by regulators and activists. But it seems, just like the case with other ad platforms, advertisers are focused more on TikTok’s growing young user base. TikTok has faced a myriad of brand safety issues. One concern comes from its younger user base. A February pitch deck showed 60% of U.S. users were between 16 and 24. In February, the Federal Trade Commission fined Musical.ly — which ByteDance bought in 2017 and merged with TikTok in 2018 — a record $5.7 million for illegally collecting personal information of children. Shortly thereafter, the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Officer began investigating TikTok over child data user, The Guardian reported this month. In April, an Indian court banned TikTok for exposing children to sexual predators, pornographic content and cyberbullying, CNN reported. The ruling was overturned after TikTok claimed to be addressing those concerns. TikTok also was briefly banned in Indonesia,...