After death of 10-year-old, Italy orders TikTok to ban unverified users

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Jan 23, 2021, 08.53 AM(IST)

TikTok Photograph:( Reuters )

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Italy's data privacy watchdog ordered TikTok on Friday to block accounts of users in Italy whose age could not be confirmed by the service after a 10-year-old girl died

Italy's data privacy watchdog ordered TikTok on Friday to block accounts of users in Italy whose age could not be confirmed by the service after a 10-year-old girl died.

The regulator claimed that TikTok had committed to banning registration for kids below 13, but noted that it was not difficult to break this rule.

Owing to this, the Chinese company is required to ban unverified users at least till February 15 when more details of the ban will be revealed.

TikTok, owned by China's ByteDance did not respond to the move.

A 10-year-old girl died of asphyxiation in Palermo, Sicily after using the app. According to her parents, she was participating in "Blackout Challenge", whereby users put a belt around their necks and hold their breath while recording themselves on the phone.

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Prosecutors are currently investigating the incident, taking into account whether someone invited the kid to participate in the challenge.

"The watchdog decided to intervene as a matter of urgency following the terrible case of the 10-year-old girl from Palermo," the authority said.

It also banned the app from "further processing user data for which there is no absolute certainty of age and, consequently, of compliance with the provisions related to the age requirement".

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As part of this move, unverified users will no longer be able to upload videos, or interact with people on the platform.

In addition, the watchdog added how it had raised concerns of violations in December, which included allegations of the firm's inability to protect minors.

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