The Dar al-Iftaa Observatory warned families not to allow children to use the TikTok application, also known as Douyin, as it is used by accounts promoting terrorist organizations and showcases recordings involving graphic scenes of murder and dead bodies.
In a report, Dar al-Iftaa said that the application, which publishes short videos uploaded by users for entertainment, is being utilized as a propaganda tool by terrorist groups taking advantage of modern technology.
The application recently removed nearly twenty accounts promoting ISIS propaganda videos and videos of women proudly stating they belonged to the terrorist organization, the observatory’s report said.
Dar al-Iftaa stated that TikTok was launched in 2016, in China as “A.me”. The name was then changed to Douyin shortly after its release. ByteDance renamed the brand for the third time as Tech Talk to attract the international market when the application was introduced to other countries in September 2017.
Within just one year of its launch, the app already had 100 million users and one billion video views a day, it pointed out.
By 2018, the app already had gathered 660 million downloads worldwide, according to Sensor Tower data analysis, which provides data on smartphone applications. The app also ranks first in the app store in terms of downloads worldwide during the last quarter of 2018.
The Observatory said that the app’s rapid spread and wide-ranging userbase are now targeted by terrorist groups.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm