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Saturday, January 13, 2024

Is TikTok Secure for Youngsters?

When you’re the mum or dad of a tween, you’ve undoubtedly heard of the favored social media app TikTok, a video-sharing platform the place customers can watch, create and share self-made movies shot on cell telephones. 

As know-how continues to evolve, it may be a problem to maintain up. Questions of on-line security and information privateness issues are prime of thoughts for a lot of dad and mom, which begs the query, is TikTok secure for teenagers? 

Given the app’s growing rise in reputation — and media consideration for illegal information assortment and alleged privateness issues — it’s essential to grasp what precisely your youngster is consuming in addition to what data is being shared about them on-line. Right here’s what it’s good to know on the subject of your youngster’s security on TikTok.

Desk of Contents

What Is TikTok?

TikTok is a video-sharing platform the place customers can watch, create and share movies shot on cell telephones. The content material discovered on TikTok runs the gamut from lip-syncing and comedic dancing to academic movies on subjects like well being or politics. 

The app supplies an interactive world of video-based content material the place customers can join with one another. However because the TikTok craze continues to unfold worldwide, many dad and mom surprise in regards to the security implications of the app their children can’t get sufficient of, significantly if their children are on the youthful aspect.

TikTok’s official age requirement is 13 years outdated. Customers between the age of 13 and 15 have their account set to non-public by default, which prohibits them from personal messaging and solely permits buddies to touch upon their movies. Solely customers over the age of 16 can file dwell movies or use the personal messaging characteristic.


The neighborhood related to the world of TikTok makes it significantly interactive and interesting for customers. Along with creating their very own movies, customers can observe different creators on the app and interact with their creations by likes, feedback, and messages.

Though TikTok has grow to be an entertaining and interesting pastime for a lot of, each social media app comes with some degree of threat on the subject of on-line security and information privateness. Whereas the vast majority of content material is innocent, there are nonetheless some areas of warning to pay attention to.

Is TikTok Secure for Youngsters?

TikTok options mature consumer content material that could require parental steerage for younger children or youngsters underneath 16. Nevertheless, there are youth security options like TikTok for Youthful Customers underneath 13 years outdated and mum or dad management guides that may make TikTok safer and age-appropriate for teenagers. 

TikTok enforces automated parental controls for youngsters 13-15 years outdated that prohibit their entry to sure options like personal messaging, video commenting or TikTok’s profile solutions to customers they might know. 

TikTok has additionally taken its privateness settings a step additional for teenagers ages 16-17, permitting customers to show off push notifications after 10 p.m., set direct messaging to “No One” (which they will change anytime), select who can obtain their movies and extra.

Right here is an summary of TikTok restrictions and security options for youngsters 13-17 years outdated:

  • For teenagers underneath 13 years outdated, TikTok:
    • Gives TikTok for Youthful Customers, a restricted app expertise that permits TikTok so as to add customers to age-appropriate environments on-line that observe Federal Commerce Fee (FTC) pointers
    • Restricts sharing of non-public data
    • Restricts video sharing, commenting, consumer messaging or sustaining followers
    • Permits dad and mom to dam the app in a toddler’s gadget by way of Google Play or Apple App Retailer and implement parental controls
  • For teenagers 13-15 years outdated, TikTok:
    • Restricts personal messaging, together with sharing movies and pictures
    • Routinely units accounts to non-public
    • Limits content material sharing to solely buddies and followers as a substitute of “Everybody”
    • Completely turns off content material downloads from different customers
    • Turns off notification alerts after 9 p.m. (customers can nonetheless verify their notifications; they simply received’t be alerted)
    • Turns off Duet (side-by-side video posting) and Sew (including particular components from one other consumer’s video into your individual) app options
    • Asks customers to pick out who can watch after they publish their first video
  • For teenagers 16-17 years outdated, TikTok:
    • Routinely defaults direct messaging to “No One” (teenagers should manually change this setting to ship and obtain messaging on-line)
    • Sends immediate to verify privateness settings when customers ship their first DM
    • Sends request to verify who can obtain their movies
    • Turns off notification alerts after 10 p.m. (customers can nonetheless verify their notifications; they simply received’t be alerted)

Though TikTok tries to handle its security controls for teenagers, there are methods round these restrictions, like children registering for a brand new account underneath a distinct title and age. It’s important to watch your youngster’s exercise and take into account the dangers beneath earlier than letting your youngster use TikTok.

Dangers to Think about

In case your youngster makes use of TikTok and also you’re frightened about what precisely they’re stepping into, you aren’t alone. Educating your self on the potential issues of safety related to TikTok can assist you establish whether or not or not you’re comfy along with your youngster utilizing it. Listed here are the principle dangers to know in regards to the app.

Publicity to Inappropriate Content material

TikTok is break up into two fundamental feed sections. The “Following” feed solely shows movies created by the customers you observe. The “For You” feed curates a stream of advised movies primarily based in your account exercise and the kind of content material you sometimes watch.


Issues can get problematic on the subject of the For You feed, which might find yourself surfacing movies containing inappropriate content material — whether or not it’s sexually express, profane or bodily harmful.

Whereas TikTok’s pointers bar customers from sharing unlawful or inappropriate content material throughout the app, movies aren’t manually monitored and vetted. As an alternative, digital algorithms are used to filter out content material that violates TikTok’s pointers. Which means some inappropriate content material will inevitably slip by the cracks and make its approach onto customers’ screens.

Contact With Strangers

With over 1.2 billion individuals utilizing TikTok as of 2023, the potential for speaking with strangers runs excessive. Accounts created by these over the age of 16 are set to public by default, that means their account exercise is seen to anybody.

This implies they will talk with anybody and everybody they encounter on the app, together with strangers. Whereas accounts made by children between the ages of 13 and 15 are set to non-public by default, this restriction can simply be bypassed by getting into a false start date when registering for an account.

Having a public account means extra than simply having your profile and movies seen to anybody on and off TikTok. It additionally permits your account to be advised to different customers throughout the app, permits anybody to remark in your movies and permits your movies to be downloaded by different customers. Whereas these settings will be adjusted to permit for extra privateness, the potential for contact with strangers will at all times exist.


You’re doubtless conscious that social media and cyberbullying go hand in hand, and TikTok is not any exception. Whether or not it’s strangers sharing their dangerous opinions and even feedback from buddies your youngster is aware of in actual life, TikTok — like each different social media platform — supplies a fertile floor for cyberbullying to take root.

A serious type of cyberbullying that’s occurred more and more inside TikTok is physique shaming. Well-known TikTok customers have spoken up about their private experiences being physique shamed within the remark part of their movies and coping with an infinite slew of dangerous feedback about their physique form and measurement. This will have far-reaching results on youthful customers who’re nonetheless creating mentally and bodily, doubtlessly resulting in emotions of worthlessness and humiliation.

Knowledge Privateness

A typical concern with any social media platform is the query of how your information is getting used. The essential factor to understand is that whereas we have a tendency to consider social media platforms as free, they technically aren’t. They’re paid for by advertisers in trade for firms like TikTok to point out their advertisements to customers on the app.

To ensure that these advertisements to achieve success and attain their ideally suited audience, they want information about these individuals. That’s how TikTok (and lots of different social media platforms) makes cash: by promoting consumer information to advertisers.


With this in thoughts, dad and mom ought to perceive what information is being collected on their children and the way it’s getting used. TikTok gathers your nation location, web tackle and the kind of gadget you’re utilizing. Together with your permission, it could actually even have your actual location, cellphone contacts and exercise on different social media channels. Along with your age and cellphone quantity, TikTok additionally has entry to any personal messages despatched throughout the app.

Psychological Well being

Is TikTok secure for teenagers and their psychological well being? You must take into account TikTok’s influence in your youngster’s psychological well-being earlier than permitting them to make use of it. Elements like physique shaming, unrealistic magnificence requirements and addictive scrolling could influence your youngster’s emotional well-being, self-confidence and id.

The infinite scrolling nature of TikTok may have an effect on your youngster’s sleep patterns and long-term means to focus. Overtly talk along with your children about web security and expectations and arrange boundaries like deadlines or content material blocks to decrease these dangers.

TikTok Security Insurance policies and Options for Teenagers 

TikTok promotes neighborhood security by implementing methods and instruments that prioritize age-appropriate experiences for younger customers. TikTok helps neighborhood security by monitoring or banning consumer accounts that violate its security insurance policies or could have been created utilizing false data.

Encouraging Age-Acceptable Actions

TikTok has a ranking  of 12+ of their app retailer, that means dad and mom can use device-level controls to forestall their kids from downloading the app or redirect children to TikTok for Youthful Customers, which has fewer options and automatic security measures for customers underneath 13 years outdated. 

Eradicating Underage Accounts

TikTok has a security moderation crew educated to identify clues that recommend a toddler underneath 13 could also be utilizing an account. They monitor information, monitor key phrases and use reporting strategies to search out and instantly droop the account if it might be related to a minor.

Being Extra Clear

Along with providing transparency stories on the variety of accounts deleted for breaking neighborhood security laws, TikTok will quickly begin providing stories on the variety of underage accounts deleted.  

Selling Protecting Neighborhood Tips

TikTok promotes teen security by upholding a set of neighborhood pointers constructed round 4 pillars:

  1. Eliminating offensive materials that violates TikTok insurance policies
  2. Limiting the viewers for mature content material to these over 18
  3. Sustaining the age-appropriateness of the advised content material on the “For You” web page
  4. Offering the neighborhood with instruments to interact in secure on-line looking

TikTok Parental Controls

If you wish to guarantee your youngster makes use of TikTok safely, there are a number of steps you’ll be able to take. TikTok has quite a lot of privateness management settings that you could arrange out of your youngster’s account that may present a safer expertise on the app. Learn on for an summary of what security settings you’ll be able to handle in TikTok, together with some extra security precautions you’ll be able to take to implement parental controls and ensure your youngster is staying secure on-line.

Use Household Pairing

Household Pairing Mode is a current addition to the obtainable privateness management measures you’ll be able to handle on TikTok. Each the mum or dad and youngster should have their very own separate TikTok accounts with a purpose to allow it.

As soon as enabled, dad and mom can hyperlink their account to their youngster’s and have management of essential privateness settings from their very own gadget. (Beforehand, dad and mom needed to regulate privateness settings throughout the app on their youngster’s gadget.) It’s additionally password-protected, so until your youngster guesses your passcode, they will’t go in and reverse the settings you set in place.


Household Pairing permits dad and mom to handle display time, direct messaging settings and the kind of content material their youngster can see on the app. To arrange Household Pairing, obtain the TikTok app in your cellphone and create an account. You’ll additionally want your youngster’s cellphone and their TikTok account logged in and open. Right here’s what to do from there:

  • Faucet the three dots subsequent to your consumer profile, then scroll all the way down to Digital Wellbeing.
  • Faucet Household Pairing and choose whether or not the cellphone you’re utilizing belongs to you or your youngster.
  • A QR code might be displayed in your cellphone. To hyperlink your accounts, your youngster should scan the QR code.
  • Now you can entry and handle the safety features of your youngster’s account.

Right here’s some extra data on what precisely you’ll be able to management with Household Pairing:

  • Display screen time administration: You’ll be able to regulate how lengthy your youngster is allowed to spend on TikTok per day.
  • Display screen time dashboard: You’ll be able to obtain a abstract report detailing what number of occasions your youngster opens TikTok and time spent on the app.
  • Direct messages: You’ll be able to prohibit who can ship messages to your youngster’s account (Everybody or Pals solely), or flip off direct messaging fully. Direct messaging is robotically disabled for customers between the ages of 13 and 15.
  • Filter video key phrases: You’ll be able to select which hashtags or key phrases to cover out of your teen’s Following and For You feeds.
  • STEM feed: You’ll be able to approve your youngster’s entry to TikTok’s STEM feed for science, know-how, engineering and arithmetic content material.
  • Discoverability: You’ll be able to management who can uncover and observe your youngster by making their account public or personal.
  • Restricted mode: This setting robotically filters out content material out of your youngster’s feed that will not be applicable for younger audiences.
  • Favored movies: You’ll be able to regulate who can view the movies your youngster has favored (Everybody or Pals solely).
  • Feedback: You’ll be able to management who can remark in your youngster’s movies (Everybody, Pals solely or nobody).
  • Recommend account to others: Management whether or not your youngster’s account will be advisable to others or not.

Be taught the best way to arrange Household Pairing by following this fast information

In case your youngster manages to disable the Household Pairing setting, you’ll obtain a notification in your cellphone to let you realize.

For extra data, uncover TikTok consumer security help.

Management Display screen Time

You’ll be able to set limits on how a lot time your youngster spends on TikTok. When you can handle this setting utilizing the Household Pairing characteristic, you don’t must arrange Household Pairing to regulate it. Remember the fact that with out Household Pairing activated, you’ll must handle this setting out of your youngster’s gadget. Right here’s the best way to regulate your youngster’s display time settings:


  • Out of your youngster’s gadget, open the TikTok app.
  • Go to profile, then faucet the three dots button to open the menu .
  • Click on Settings and Privateness.
  • Click on display time.
  • Faucet every day display time.
  • Set your required deadlines
  • Select and make sure a passcode.

To show Display screen Time Administration off, merely repeat steps one by 4, then select “Flip off Display screen Time Administration.”

Direct Messages

You’ll be able to restrict who can ship direct messages to your youngster’s account, or flip off direct messaging fully. When you don’t have Household Pairing activated, you’ll be able to nonetheless management this setting — you’ll simply have to regulate it straight out of your youngster’s gadget. Right here’s the best way to handle this setting:

  • Out of your youngster’s gadget, open the TikTok app.
  • Go to profile, then faucet the three dots button to open the menu.
  • Scroll all the way down to Settings and Privateness .
  • Faucet Direct Messages.
  • Choose who can ship you messages.
  • Select “Everybody, Pals, or No One.”

Activate Restricted Mode

Restricted Mode means that you can prohibit inappropriate content material from displaying in your youngster’s TikTok feed. When you can handle this setting utilizing the Household Pairing characteristic described above, you don’t must arrange Household Pairing to regulate it. Remember the fact that with out Household Pairing activated, you’ll must handle this setting out of your youngster’s gadget. Right here’s the best way to activate Restricted Mode:

  • Out of your youngster’s gadget, open the TikTok app.
  • Go to profile, then faucet the three dots button to open the menu.
  • Click on Settings and Privateness.
  • Click on Content material Preferences.
  • Choose Restricted Mode.
  • Select Activate Restricted Mode.
  • Select and make sure your passcode.


To show Restricted Mode off, merely repeat steps one by 4, then select “Flip off Restricted Mode.”

Handle Interactions

There are various extra privateness settings you’ll be able to regulate to extend your youngster’s security whereas utilizing the app. You’ll have to regulate them out of your youngster’s gadget, however you can also make them passcode-protected to keep away from your youngster interfering with the controls you set in place.

To entry extra privateness settings, open TikTok in your youngster’s gadget. Go to their profile, then faucet the three dots button to open settings. Scroll all the way down to Privateness and Security, then navigate to the next sections to entry extra settings:

Below Discoverability:

  • If you need your youngster’s account to be personal, toggle Non-public Account to on.
  • To maintain your youngster’s account from being advised to different customers, toggle Recommend Your Account to Others off.

Below Personalization and Knowledge:

  • To restrict the quantity of information TikTok collects out of your youngster’s account, toggle Customized Advertisements off.

Below Security:

  • Toggle Permit Your Movies to Be Downloaded off.
  • Flip Who Can Ship You Direct Messages to nobody.
  • Flip Who Can React to Your Movies to nobody.
  • Set Who Can View Your Favored Pictures to Solely me.
  • Flip Who Can Touch upon Your Movies to nobody.


Consider you’ll have the choice to set these options to Everybody, Pals or nobody. Selecting the “nobody” setting supplies the best degree of privateness and safety. When you select the Pals setting, it’s a good suggestion to repeatedly monitor who your youngster provides to their buddies checklist going ahead.

Focus on Web Security with Your Youngsters

For all of the methods security measures you’ll be able to take to guard your kids, there’s at all times the potential for one thing slipping by the cracks. Not solely that, however children may attempt to sidestep dad and mom’ digital boundaries and discover methods to get round them. That’s why taking time to train your children about on-line security may be one of the impactful security measures you’ll be able to take as a mum or dad.

teaching-kids-about-internet-safetyBy instructing your kids why sure boundaries are put into place and serving to them perceive the severity of sure risks that lurk on-line, they’ll be extra geared up to handle their very own social media experiences.

Child-Pleasant TikTok Alternate options

Even after studying in regards to the security measures TikTok supplies to verify your youngster makes use of the app safely, you may nonetheless favor in the event that they didn’t use it in any respect. If so, take a look at these safer alternate options to TikTok that your youngster can take pleasure in instead of TikTok.

Grom Social 

Grom Social is a social media leisure web site for youngsters ages 4-15. Kids can use the app to fulfill and join with different children on-line, make movies, share posts, chat and make new buddies. Grom Social has strict security options comparable to screening for inappropriate language and parental controls to watch your youngster’s exercise. It additionally requires parental approval earlier than your youngster can create an account. 


Funimate lets customers create quite a lot of movies: slow-motion, compilation movies, looped movies and much more. The app’s massive music library means that you can embrace numerous well-liked songs and sound results in your movies, and you can too add textual content and stickers to your movies. Funimate options over 20 video results to make creations pop and let customers showcase their creativity.


Triller is a safer various to TikTok that allows you to file movies and share them on different social media accounts like Twitter, Instagram or Fb. The simplicity of the app is what attracts most customers, together with celebrities like Kevin Hart and Selena Gomez. All it’s important to do is file your footage, and Triller’s auto-editing device does the remainder of the work. Customers can edit their movies additional with modifying instruments offered within the app, and might use quite a lot of filters and even draw on the movies for an additional degree of creativity and personalization.

H3: Zigazoo Youngsters

Zigazoo Youngsters is a TikTok-like app made for youngsters underneath 13. This app lets customers create movies of themselves dancing, appearing, telling jokes and doing different creative issues, then share their movies or take part in challenges. Zigazoo Youngsters is rated 100% kid-safe within the Google Play and Apple Retailer and fosters a enjoyable, optimistic and applicable atmosphere for teenagers to specific themselves.

TikTok FAQ

When you have extra questions on how TikTok works for you and your loved ones, we’ve lined some generally requested questions beneath. 

What Are the TikTok Age Necessities?

TikTok has a 12+ ranking within the app retailer, that means customers 13 years and older are permitted to make use of the app. It is very important know that TikTok has no age verification instruments and solely requests your date of start when signing up. 

Is TikTok Acceptable for Kids?

Parental steerage is advisable on TikTok for teenagers 13-17 years outdated because of the app’s mature content material. Nevertheless, there are security options and parental controls you’ll be able to implement to watch your youngster’s exercise on TikTok and create a safer on-line expertise. 

Is There a Youngsters TikTok?

TikTok supplies TikTok for Youthful Customers, a simplified app expertise with further security and privateness options for youngsters underneath the age of 13. Customers are restricted to what they will share, view and entry on-line. 

Is It Secure to Publish Your Youngsters on TikTok?

To make sure the security of your kids and their private data, it will not be secure to publish your children on TikTok. Cybercriminals can use the data you share on-line, together with your children’ names, birthdates, start places and extra, to steal their id for fraudulent functions or to entry personal information.  

How Can I Make TikTok Secure for My Baby?

Monitor your youngster’s on-line exercise when utilizing TikTok and educate your self on the app’s security options and parental controls. By understanding the best way to prohibit entry to sure content material or restrict the time your youngster spends on the app, you can also make TikTok safer in your youngster and family. 

Can I Share a TikTok Account With My Youngsters?

TikTok affords the parental management Household Pairing, which lets you monitor, handle and share a TikTok account along with your children by linking your accounts collectively.

How Do I Make a TikTok Account Non-public?

To make your TikTok account public or personal:

  1. Choose Profile from the underside of the TikTok app.
  2. Press the higher Menu ☰ button.
  3. Choose Privateness from the Settings menu.
  4. Flip the personal account on or off.

How Do I Set Up Household Pairing?

To arrange Household Pairing:

  1. Choose Profile from the underside menu.
  2. Press and maintain the higher Menu button.
  3. Choose Settings and Privateness, then choose “Household Pairing.
  4. Faucet Teen or Guardian.
  5. To hyperlink accounts, observe the directions within the app.

Does TikTok Gather Your Knowledge?

TikTok collects your information for promoting and advertising functions. TikTok has invested greater than $1.5 billion into its Oracle Cloud platform, which holds and secures all of your information in a single server from overseas cyberattacks and hackers. 

Hold Your Household Protected With Panda Safety

As a mum or dad, it may be troublesome to remain forward of fast-paced social apps like TikTok and decide if TikTok is secure in your children. Realizing what privateness settings you’ll be able to management and setting boundaries along with your kids is a good way to maintain your youngster protected against on-line threats, together with maintaining malware and information breaches at bay.

Guarantee your complete household stays protected by sustaining antivirus software program on your whole related units and reduce the probabilities of you or your youngster changing into a sufferer of cybersecurity threats.

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