This is part of efforts by the Chinese platform to allay Western concerns about the risks associated with private data.
The platform is being closely watched by European and US regulators amid fears that private user data could end up in China.
TikTok is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, which moved its headquarters to Singapore in 2020. However, the app itself has repeatedly denied any connection to Beijing, saying all user data is stored securely at Singapore and the United States.
TikTok unveiled plans to store data in Europe, where strict privacy laws apply, earlier this year after several Western governments banned the app on official devices. Finally, the platform confirmed that it had opened one of its centers.
“Our first data center in Dublin, Ireland is now operational and the migration of European user data has begun,” TikTok said in a statement.
The other two centers – one in Ireland and one in Norway – will be installed by the end of next year, Elaine Fox, TikTok’s European user privacy manager, told reporters. He said all European user data will be stored locally at a later date.
The project is overseen by British cybersecurity firm NCC Group, Theo Bertram, TikTok’s vice president for European public policy, said in a blog post.
The NCC group will inspect the data stream to ensure that only authorized personnel can access restricted data types, and perform real-time monitoring to detect and respond to suspicious access attempts, he said.
“All of these controls and operations are designed to ensure that our European users’ data is stored in a purpose-built secure environment and that access to it should only be authorized by personnel who are subject to supervision and control. strict independents,” said Th. Bertram.
Big tech companies are grappling with European rules that limit the transfer of personal information, even to the United States.
Brussels has repeatedly tried to strike data-sharing deals with Washington, but each time those deals have been blocked by the European Court of Justice.
In this regard, the judges sided with rights advocates, who argue that US companies are forced to transfer data to national security agencies and thus violate the rights of people in the bloc’s countries.
But after ByteDance admitted in December 2022 that employees had accessed the data of two American journalists as part of an internal investigation into leaks within the company, the surveillance intensified.
Countries like Australia, Belgium and Canada have since banned authorities from using the app on business devices.
The US state of Montana has announced a total ban on the app, but that decision is under appeal.
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