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The Cnil pronounces its first sanction against TikTok


The social network is fined 5 million euros for breaches of obligations around advertising cookies. Two larger surveys are underway at European level.

The sum may seem small, but it is to date the largest sanction pronounced in Europe against TikTok.

This Thursday, the Cnil announced that it was imposing a fine of 5 million euros on the Chinese social network.

In question, various shortcomings around the collection of the consent of Internet users on the deposit of advertising cookies.

TikTok faced a maximum fine of 10 million euros.

During the procedure, the social network asked, in vain, that this sanction not be made public.

It comes at a time when, in the wake of the United States, TikTok is subject to growing criticism in Europe from regulators and political authorities around the protection of minors against a particularly addictive application, or the transfer of certain data to China.

A complex refusal of cookies

TikTok is sanctioned by the CNIL because, until February 28, 2022, visitors to its website could not simply refuse the deposit of cookies on their computers or smartphones.

In addition, TikTok did not sufficiently explain to the Internet user the purpose pursued by each of the cookies, which prevented the latter from making an informed choice.

Read alsoQUESTIONS TECH - What are cookies?

The personal data gendarme had given sites operating in France until April 1, 2021 to modify their information banners on cookies.

The Cnil has since carried out a series of checks which has led to sanctions against many digital players, including Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Amazon.

The procedure against TikTok somehow closes the march.

In its deliberation, the regulator acknowledges that the social network cooperated in its investigation and complied during the procedure.

TikTok had pleaded for a simple call to order rather than "

disproportionate and unjustified

" fines according to this document.

The social network has four months to appeal to the Council of State.

Two other surveys at European level

This decision is only the first brick of the actions of the Cnil concerning TikTok

”, explains to Figaro its secretary general Louis Dutheillet de Lamothe.

The regulator has indeed launched two other investigations in 2021 on the transfer of European user data to China, as well as on the processing of personal data of users under the age of 18, who represent a significant part of the audience of Tik Tok.

These files have been transferred to the Irish Cnil, the Data Protection Commission (DPC), TikTok's supervisory authority in Europe for all matters relating to the processing of personal data.

Read alsoThe pressure is growing on TikTok in the United States and France

The latter opened two investigations in September 2021 which should be completed during the course of this year.

The conclusions of the DPC will be examined by the other Cnils of the European Union, which can validate them or object - for example, if the sanctions are insufficiently high.

In the latter case, a consensus decision will have to be found and will be binding on the Irish authority.


The files on TikTok are watched extremely closely by the Cnil of Europe

", notes Louis Dutheillet de Lamothe.

The investigation into the protection of minors could force the social network to put in place more robust procedures for verifying the age of its young users.

That on the transfer of data outside of Europe led TikTok to acknowledge in November that certain information could be accessed from China “

subject to a series of robust security checks and approval protocols.


Tour in Brussels for the CEO of TikTok

Several European commissioners asked TikTok to cooperate fully with these two investigations during meetings organized on Tuesday in Brussels with its CEO Shou Zi Chew.

There should be no doubt that the data of European users is safe and not exposed to illegal access by third-country authorities

,” commented Values ​​and Transparency Commissioner Vera Jourova.

This trip by Shou Zi Chew, organized at the initiative of TikTok, aimed to reassure the European executive of the social network's desire to comply with the Digital Services Act, to which it will be subject from September.

This text imposes on platforms various obligations of means in the fight against illegal content, from online hatred to the sale of counterfeit or illegal products.


I am counting on TikTok to fully execute its commitments to do its utmost to respect European law and regain the trust of regulators

," said Vera Jourova


Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2023-01-12

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