The US state of Indiana has reportedly filed a lawsuit against the well-known social media app TikTok. The parent firm of TikTok, ByteDance, has been charged by the states attorney general, Todd Rokita, for breaking consumer protection rules.
On Wednesday i.e., 7th December, two lawsuits were filed. According to the first, the app lays bare young users to objectionable content. In the other case, Mr. Rokita asserts that TikTok fails to reveal the possibility of the Chinese government accessing private user information.
The algorithm of the app, according to the complaint, encourages the consumption of a wide range of inappropriate information, including sexual content, nudity, suggestive themes, depictions of tobacco, drugs, and drinks, and immense profanity.
Additionally, it asserts that the age ratings of 12 and up on the Apple and Google app stores confuse young consumers. Indiana is requesting a restraining order against the companys actions as well as civil penalties for its unfair and misleading conduct.
According to Mr. Rokita, this is the first time a US state has brought legal action against ByteDance.
The launch of the cases follows the drafting of legislation to outlaw TikTok by other US jurisdictions. The usage of TikTok on state property has been outlawed in South Dakota, Texas, and South Carolina.
Notably, even the FBI director stated last month that TikTok is a national security risk.
Chinese legislation essentially mandates businesses to perform whatever the administration intends them to in terms of providing information or operating as a tool of the Chinese government, according to its director Chris Wray, who testified before the US House Homeland Security Committee.
The Biden administration has been in discussions with TikTok representatives for months to come to a national security deal to safeguard the data of its millions of US users.
In a similar context, TikTok is running into legal issues overseas. The social media corporation could be fined USD 29 million in the UK for failing to safeguard children's privacy when they use the platform.