European Commission gives TikTok 24 hours to provide risk assessment of TikTok Lite

Under the Digital Services Act, the EU industry chief Thierry Breton has requested the assessment, as companies are required to address illegal and harmful content on their platforms.

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European regulators have demanded a risk assessment from TikTok within 24 hours regarding its new app, TikTok Lite, recently launched in France and Spain. The European Commission, under the Digital Services Act (DSA), is concerned about potential impacts on children and users’ mental health. This action follows an investigation initiated two months ago into TikTok for potential breaches of the EU tech rules.

Thierry Breton, the EU industry chief, emphasised the need for TikTok to conduct a risk assessment before launching the app in the 27-country EU. The DSA requires platforms to take stronger actions against illegal and harmful content, with penalties of up to 6% of their global annual turnover for violations. Breton likened the potentially addictive and toxic nature of ‘social media lite’ to ‘cigarettes light,’ underlining the commitment to protecting minors under the DSA.

TikTok Lite, targeted at users aged 18+, includes a ‘Task and Reward Lite’ program that allows users to earn points by engaging in specific platform activities. These points can be redeemed for rewards like Amazon vouchers, PayPal gift cards, or TikTok coins for tipping creators. The Commission expressed concerns about the app’s impact on minors and users’ mental health, particularly potential addictive behaviours.

Why does it matter?

TikTok has been directed to provide the requested risk assessment for TikTok Lite within 24 hours and additional information by 26 April. The Commission will analyse TikTok’s response and determine the next steps. TikTok has acknowledged the request for information and stated that it is in direct contact with the Commission regarding this matter. Additionally, the Commission has asked for details on measures implemented by TikTok to mitigate systemic risks associated with the new app.