Italian police announced on Tuesday the opening of an investigation against the Chinese social network TikTok, accused of allowing the spread of “dangerous content that encourages suicide, self-harm and the development of eating disorders.”
The investigation, carried out by the Competition Authority, concerns the Irish company TikTok Technology Limited, which is responsible for relations with European consumers, as well as the English and Italian subsidiaries, he said in a press release.
The Italian headquarters of TikTok was the subject of an audit on Tuesday by the financial police, who were in charge of the case.
The opening of the investigation was determined by the presence on the scene of “numerous videos of young people who adopt self-harming behaviors”, such as the recent challenge to mark their face with the “French scar”, as it is called. viral.
That challenge, which is described in many tutorials on TikTok, involves pinching your cheekbones so hard and for so long that you have to leave a bruise, but even permanent marks can be left, practice dangerous, according to the doctors.
The antitrust entity criticizes TikTok for not having implemented adequate systems to monitor content, “especially in the presence of particularly vulnerable users such as minors.”
TikTok “has not implemented its own rules, which consider removing dangerous content related to challenges, suicide, self-harm and eating disorders,” the authority states in a press release..
It is owned by the Chinese giant ByteDance, and many countries are currently targeting TikTok for security reasons.