TikTok unveils new privacy changes for teens

TikTok logo
TikTok logo (Image credit: TikTok)

What you need to know

  • TikTok has new privacy changes for teens on its platforms.
  • Direct Messaging will now be turned off by default.
  • It will also let users decide who can see their videos.

TikTok has announced new privacy changes for teens on its platforms to help keep them safe.

The video giant announced that it is rolling out changes globally over the coming months "to ensure even stronger proactive protections to help keep teens safe."

TikTok says that going forward, 16-17-year-olds will have their Direct Messaging setting set to 'No one' by default, which means to send messages they'll have to manually enable the feature. Accounts that haven't used DMs before will get a prompt to review and confirm their privacy settings.

TikTok is also changing settings around who can see your videos:

The process of making a TikTok is fun and creative – choosing music, picking effects, and getting the transitions right – but it is just as important to choose who that video will be shared with. To help teens understand the sharing options available to them we're now adding a pop-up that appears when teens under the age of 16 are ready to publish their first video, asking them to choose who can watch the video. They won't be able to publish their video until they make a selection.

New context around downloading public videos for 16-17-year-olds will also give them more information about letting people download videos they post. These are already permanently disabled for under 16s.

Finally, TikTok is changing when younger teens can receive push notifications:

Now, we'll be drawing upon this research to make changes that reduce the time period during which our younger teens can receive push notifications. Accounts aged 13-15 will not receive push notifications from 9pm, and accounts aged 16-17 will have push notifications disabled starting at 10pm.

You can read about the full raft of changes here.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9