TikTok is a place to be creative and express yourself, and they offer a lot of privacy settings to help you manage your experience. We have put a guide together on how you can stay safe while using the app.
Downloading TikTok and Creating an Account
TikTok says that users below the age of 13 are not allowed on the platform and any user who is under this age will be removed.
Accounts for people under 16 are set to private when they are first set up, which means you can say yes or no to follower requests, and only people you have said yes to can see what you post. Accounts for people who are over 16 are public, which means anyone with a TikTok account can view your public videos and post comments on the content you have made and shared. If you want to change your account to private you can change this in your privacy settings on TikTok.
Family Pairing lets parents and caregivers link their TikTok account to yours so families can set rules together on what you post and your privacy settings. This gives parents and caregivers a more hands-on approach to your safety and privacy when using TikTok. Direct Messages are only available to accounts who are 16 and older and it is one of the settings that a parent or caregiver can turn off with Family Pairing.
When posting on TikTok you can choose who can view your video each time you publish a video. You can choose to make it that only yourself, your ‘Friends,’ or the wider TikTok community can see it.
When an account for someone under 16 is first set up, comments are set to ‘Friends’ only (followers that you follow back). People under 16 can switch between ‘Friends’ or ‘No one.’ People who are above 16 can choose ‘Everyone,’ ‘Friends’, or turn off comments completely.
As well as comment controls, TikTok also gives people the option to create their own comment filters. The app offers two ways to quickly and easily choose comments you don’t want to see. The first option automatically hides offensive comments which TikTok’s systems detect on your videos; the second option lets you create a list of words so that comments with those words in them will be hidden. You can remove comments that you do not want to see, or report them, which can be done by long-pressing on a comment if you think it goes against TikTok’s Community Guidelines.
Blocking an Account
TikTok lets you keep anyone from contacting you or commenting on your content for any reason, by either blocking or removing them from following you. By blocking an account, that person will not be able to view your content or send you messages. Removing someone from following you means that your content will no longer appear in their Following feed.
TikTok also allows you to set rules on video downloads and who can duet or stitch your videos. Users under 16 or with a private account cannot have their videos downloaded and duets and stitches is set to ‘Friends’.
If you would like more control over control the content you see, you can turn on Restricted Mode. Restricted Mode is an option in the account settings that limits content that may not be suitable for all ages. Restricted Mode can always be turned off, so if you find yourself missing videos you want to see, you can switch it back whenever you like. Restricted Mode is also one of the features that a parent or caregiver can turn on when Family Pairing is set up.
For more information on staying safe on Tiktok or to report anything on the app, visit TikTok’s Safety Centre.