Security News > 2023 > January > TikTok Fined $5.4 Million by French Regulator for Violating Cookie Laws

TikTok Fined $5.4 Million by French Regulator for Violating Cookie Laws
2023-01-14 05:01

Popular short-form video hosting service TikTok has been fined €5 million by the French data protection watchdog for breaking cookie consent rules, making it the latest platform to face similar penalties after Amazon, Google, Meta, and Microsoft since 2020.

The regulator said it conducted several audits between May 2020 and June 2022, finding that the ByteDance-owned company did not offer a straightforward option to refuse all cookies as opposed to just one click for accepting them.

The option to "Refuse all" cookies was introduced by TikTok in February 2022.

"Making the opt-out mechanism more complex is in fact discouraging users from refusing cookies and encouraging them to prefer the ease of the 'Accept All' button," the CNIL argued, calling it a breach of the French Data Protection Act.

It further called out TikTok for not informing users of the purposes behind depositing such cookies on users' systems when visiting tiktok[.

While cookie consent banners have become increasingly common in the wake of the E.U. General Data Protection Regulation in May 2018, it has been repeatedly observed that companies resort to illegal dark patterns to trick users into sharing more information.

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