Training, keywords and in-app reporting help thousands of safety professionals at TikTok to ensure that only those Cambodians who are old enough have a TikTok account.
Every day, creators of all backgrounds come to TikTok to connect with a global community.
From parents sharing their best tips – #momhack has 1.8 billion views – to senior citizens showing epic reunions with their best friends and family after receiving a Covid-19 vaccine, TikTok is home for a diverse range of communities to express themselves creatively and be entertained.
However, in Cambodia – just like the rest of the world – TikTok users must not be under the age of 13.
And every day, thousands of safety professionals at TikTok are tasked with the crucial job of helping keep the TikTok community safe – in Cambodia as they do elsewhere.
One part of this work involves designing strategies and tools so that only those who are old enough have a TikTok account.
One such strategy that TikTok uses is to train the platform’s safety moderation team to be alert to signs that an account may be used by a child under the age of 13.
The safety moderation also uses other information as provided by users, such as keywords and in-app reports from the TikTok community, to help surface potential underage accounts.
And when the safety team believes that an account may belong to an underage person the account will be suspended.
In addition to work to prevent underage people from using TikTok’s service, the platform has introduced meaningful tools and policies designed to promote a safe and age-appropriate experience for teens aged 13-17.
For example, when younger teens start using TikTok, the platform intentionally restricts access to some features, such as direct messaging, and automatically set accounts of users aged 13-15 to private by default.
TikTok also aims to provide parents with resources they can use to have conversations about digital safety and decide the most comfortable experience for their family, including Family Pairing features.
TikTok has a 12+ rating in the App Store, which lets parents use device-level controls to block their child from downloading the app.
To help keep people from using TikTok if they’re not yet old enough to do so, TikTok has designed a neutral, industry-standard age-gate that requires people to fill in their complete date of birth to discourage people from simply clicking a pre-populated minimum age.
If someone does not meet TikTok’s minimum age requirement, TikTok suspends their ability to attempt to recreate an account using a different date of birth.
While most people understand the importance of being truthful about their age, some do not provide the correct information, which is a challenge many online services face.
It is for this reason that TikTok’s commitment to enforcing minimum age requirements does not end at the age gate, and TikTok takes a number of additional approaches to identify and remove suspected underage account holders.
In addition, in TikTok’s transparency report, TikTok published the number of accounts removed for violating the platform’s Community Guidelines.
To bring more visibility to the actions TikTok takes to protect minors, TikTok is also sharing similar information regarding removals of suspected underage accounts, starting with TikTok’s next report.
“TikTok continues to expand the information provided in these reports – such as publishing the volume of reinstated content that was appealed – to help the industry move forward by leading the way when it comes to transparency and accountability around user safety,” said Kyu Kyu Thein, public policy manager, Cambodia at TikTok.