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China says TikTok's creator and LinkedIn are violating data privacy laws

The app makers have 15 working days to fix issues.

BEIJING, CHINA - MARCH 17: The logo of video-sharing platform TikTok, also known as Douyin, is seen during TikTok art creation forum on March 17, 2021 in Beijing, China. (Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)
VCG via Getty Images
Jon Fingas
Jon Fingas|@jonfingas|May 21, 2021 9:34 AM

A host of major app developers will have to rethink their data collection habits, at least in China. The South China Morning Post reports that the Chinese government has named and shamed 105 apps for allegedly violating laws and privacy through their data collection and usage. ByteDance caught flak for Douyin, the China-oriented equivalent to TikTok, while Microsoft faced similar accusations for LinkedIn and Bing.

Other prominent examples include the short video app Kuaishou, Baidu's mobile web browser and the streaming music service Kugou.

All the developers have 15 days to fix their claimed privacy violations. We've asked Microsoft for comment.

The crackdown is the latest and most significant after new privacy regulations took effect on May 1st limiting the scope of data collection. The SCMP notes that it's also part of a larger effort to rein in technology companies, particularly Chinese firms. China's government wants to clean up business on its terms — and while this might have positive effects on privacy and competition, it's also prompting companies to make big changes on short notice.

China says TikTok's creator and LinkedIn are violating data privacy laws