Italy fines TikTok €10 million for inadequate content checks on harmful material

The penalty follows the circulation of videos showcasing the “French scar” challenge, where participants inflict bruises on their cheekbones.

TikTok mobile phone

Italy’s competition watchdog, AGCM, has imposed a fine of €10 million on three branches of TikTok for failing to effectively monitor content that could harm young or vulnerable users.

The fine comes after videos depicting the ‘French scar’ challenge, which involves causing bruises on the cheekbones, circulated on the platform.

Despite TikTok’s claims of restricting access to such content for minors, regulators found inadequate measures were taken to prevent its spread, including through profiling algorithms.

Why does it matter?

The fine comes amidst global pressure for social media platforms to safeguard underage users. In the US, a draft bill passed by the House of Representatives could lead to TikTok’s ban unless its Chinese owners sell the platform within six months. The legislation, called the ‘Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act’, also received support from the White House.