February 23, 2023
Commissioners launch joint investigation into TikTok
The privacy protection authorities for Canada, Québec, British Columbia and Alberta announced today that they will jointly investigate the short-form video streaming application TikTok.
The investigation will be undertaken by:
- The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC);
- The Commission d'accès à l'information du Québec (CAI);
- The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia (OIPC BC); and
- The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta (OIPC AB).
The investigation was initiated in the wake of now settled, class action lawsuits in the United States and Canada, as well as numerous media reports related to TikTok’s collection, use and disclosure of personal information.
The four privacy regulators will examine whether the organization’s practices are in compliance with Canadian privacy legislation and in particular, whether valid and meaningful consent is being obtained for the collection, use and disclosure of personal information. The investigation will also determine if the company is meeting its transparency obligations, particularly when collecting personal information from its users.
An important proportion of TikTok users are younger users. Given the importance of protecting children’s privacy, the joint investigation will have a particular focus on TikTok’s privacy practices as they relate to younger users, including whether the company obtained valid and meaningful consent from these users for the collection, use and disclosure of their personal information.
- The OPC will investigate compliance with the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA).
- The CAI will investigate compliance with the Act Respecting the Protection of Personal Information in the Private Sector and the Act to Establish a Legal Framework for Information Technology in Québec.
- The OIPC BC will investigate compliance with the Personal Information Protection Act.
- The OIPC AB will investigate compliance with the Personal Information Protection Act.
As this is an active investigation, no additional details are available at this time.
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