A TikTok logo is displayed on a smartphone in this illustration taken 6 January 2020.
A TikTok logo is displayed on a smartphone in this illustration taken 6 January 2020. Reuters

The Bangladesh government sought information of two accounts to the authorities of TikTok, a video-sharing social networking service, in the first six months of this year. But the TikTok authorities did not provide any information to the government.

ByteDance, a China-based internet technology company, and owner of TikTok, published the TikTok Transparency Report (1 January-30 June) on the website on Tuesday.

In the list, as per alphabetic order, of 42 countries that made requests for user information, Bangladesh has been placed at fourth with one request for two accounts.

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The report said, “To obtain non-public user information, law enforcement must provide the appropriate legal documents required for the type of information being sought, such as a subpoena, court order, or warrant, or submit an emergency request.”

However, it said in limited emergency situations, TikTok will disclose user information without legal process. This happens when we have reason to believe, in good faith, that the disclosure of information is required to prevent the imminent risk of death or serious physical injury to any person.

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In the first six months this year, TikTok removed 10,45,43,719 videos from its platform for violating the company’s community guidelines. According to the report, the number of removed videos amount to less than one per cent of the videos uploaded on the platform.

TikTok said it removed the most number of videos uploaded by the India citizens. The number is over 37 million. In June, the government of India banned the use of TikTok and 57 other Chinese apps. Apple App Store and Google Play Store removed the apps while Indian telecom service providers stopped the entry to the apps.

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TikTok authorities said 96.46 per cent of the videos they removed even before getting any complaint. No one watched 90.32 per cent of those videos, it added.

TikTok further said the number of legal requests for user information from the governments has increased along with the rise in the number of users.

The US, Pakistan, Brazil and the UK follow India in requests for removing contents from TikTok.