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General

What is the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation?

The Take Back Your Privacy Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of privacy and consumer rights. We do this by, among other things, filing lawsuits against parties who violate the privacy of large groups of people in the Netherlands, negotiating with these perpetrators, and educating the public about privacy rights and privacy violations.

Scott+Scott Attorneys at Law LLP is the attorney for Take Back Your Privacy Foundation in the TikTok action.

Do you have a privacy statement?

Yes, you can find it here. It is important for us to handle your personal data properly. For our activities it is necessary to process your personal data in certain cases, for example when you visit our website or contact us.

If you are a participant in the collective action against TikTok, a separate privacy statement applies which you can consult here

How do I get in touch with you?

You can send an email to info@stichtingtakebackyourprivacy.nl. We will respond as soon as possible.

About the TikTok Claim

What does TikTok do wrong?

TikTok violates the privacy rights of users of the TikTok app, especially the rights of underage users.

TikTok pretends that you can use the TikTok app for free. But the app is not free at all. TikTok turns “the user” into the product. TikTok earns billions in profit every year through ad sales. To sell those ads, TikTok uses your (or your children’s) private data. TikTok users are not adequately informed about this, and have not given permission to do so. Moreover, TikTok collects far more data than is necessary, without a valid reason for doing so.

It is particularly bad that TikTok directs its unlawful actions at children. The TikTok app is very popular among precisely this very vulnerable group of people.

In any case, TikTok violates the following rules:

  • According to European privacy rules, an app must be privacy friendly. This means, for example, that as little personal information as possible should be collected. TikTok, on the other hand, collects an excessive amount of information.
  • According to European privacy rules, TikTok must have a good reason for collecting private information from users. What can be a good reason is stated in the law. TikTok does collect data, but does not have a good reason for doing so.
  • TikTok must clearly explain what personal information it collects and what it does with it. TikTok does not provide this explanation. As a result, it is completely unclear what is being done with the personal data. Moreover, the Privacy Policy, in which TikTok should explain what it does, is very unclear – especially for children.
  • TikTok’s application has several security risks, and TikTok also sends personal data to countries outside the EU, where this personal data is much less secure and can fall into the wrong hands.
  • TikTok violates the cookie law by placing cookies without informing users and asking for their consent.
  • TikTok also violates children’s consumer rights. Again, TikTok provides unclear and incomplete information. Moreover, TikTok is engaging in unfair trade practices, including (i) using misleading advertising; (ii) falsely pretending that TikTok is free (when in fact you pay with your personal data), and (iii) encouraging children to buy digital coins. TikTok further attempts to negotiate unreasonable, invalid terms with children, for example, TikTok says in its terms and conditions that it has the right to (i) unilaterally take away children’s balances and raise prices; (ii) require children to pay damages to third parties; (iii) make its own use of all videos created by the children, unlimited and forever, and so on. These terms are invalid because TikTok may not negotiate such terms with children.

If you want to read more about the case, you can do so here. Additional information about joining the case can be found there as well.

How will the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation ensure that TikTok's ends its violations?

TikTok violates children’s rights. The Take Back Your Privacy Foundation finds TikTok’s actions unacceptable. It has therefore filed a lawsuit against TikTok with the support of inter alia the Consumentenbond. We want the company to stop acting unlawfully and we want the victims to receive financial compensation. TikTok must delete the personal data that have been collected illegally, and it must implement a proper system to verify user age. The Take Back Your Privacy Foundation asked TikTok to voluntarily cease and desist its unlawful behavior, but it refused to do so. Therefore, a collective action has been initiated in the Netherlands, a so called WAMCA case. You can find the current status of the lawsuit here.

Am I entitled to compensation?

Yes. When a company violates your privacy, or for example is guilty of unfair business practices or other violations of your consumer rights, the injured party is entitled to compensation.

In the TikTok action, the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation claims compensation on behalf of (former) users of the TikTok app, who used the TikTok app while they were under 18.

Would you like to sign up for the TikTok action as one of the victims of TikTok’s behavior? You can do so through this link.

Who can join the action?

You can join as a participant if you or your child:

  • Used TikTok or Musical.ly after May 25, 2018;
  • Was 17 years old or younger when TikTok or Musical.ly was first used; and
  • resides in the Netherlands.

In the TikTok action, the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation brings a case on behalf of all underage Dutch TikTok users. Why this group? Because this group is particularly vulnerable to the unlawful practices of TikTok.

Are you the parent or guardian of a child who was 17 or younger when they used TikTok? Or did you yourself use TikTok when you were 17 or younger, and are now of age? Or are you under 18, but want to show your support for the action? If so, you can join in here.

How can I participate?

The Take Back Your Privacy Foundation will seek damages for individuals who:

  • Used TikTok or Musical.ly after May 25, 2018; and
  • Were 17 years old or younger when TikTok or Musical.ly was used; and
  • Reside in the Netherlands.

Do you or your child meet these requirements? You can register yourself as a participant if you are currently age 18 or older. As a parent or guardian, you can register your underage children. If you are still a minor, your parents must sign you up, but you can show your support.  You can do so through this link.

What does it cost to participate?

It costs nothing, because the claim is on a no cure no pay basis.

This is a conscious choice of the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation. We do not want the victims of TikTok to have to provide financial funding for litigation to obtain their rights. Instead, a no cure, no pay agreement applies.

BPGL Funding I Limited, based in Jersey, is the funder of the TikTok action. The funder ensures that the case can be done on a no cure, no pay basis. That is, the funder only gets something if the TikTok action succeeds. If any compensation is awarded, the funder is entitled to 22% of the proceeds, and compensation for the costs incurred for the TikTok action. Moreover, the funder can never receive more than 25% of the total proceeds. This entails that a participant runs no financial risk if the case unexpectedly does not turn out well. Then you do not have to pay anything.

The Take Back Your Privacy Foundation is an independent non-profit foundation. You do not have to pay us anything, and we will not receive any proceeds.

Why is the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation cooperating with the Consumentenbond in the TikTok action?

The Take Back Your Privacy Foundation has expertise with and knowledge of privacy law, advocacy and collective actions. However, the Foundation believes that you are stronger together than alone.

The Consumentenbond has been working hard on behalf of all consumers in the Netherlands since the 1950s. TikTok’s users are also consumers, and the Consumentenbond, like the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation, disagrees with TikTok’s unlawful conduct.

We can both focus on our expertise, both supported by the Foundation’s attorney, Scott+Scott Attorneys at Law LLP.

Would you like to support the TikTok campaign? You can do so here.

Does it matter if I am already signed up with another foundation?

Yes. You cannot participate in the action by the Consumentenbond and the Take Back Your Privacy Foundation if you have already signed up with another foundation. However, you can terminate your participation with the other foundation. You can then sign up with the Consumentenbond and Take Back Your Privacy Foundation. You can do so here.

Can I terminate my participation?

Yes. You can do so by sending an email to vragen@claimservice.nl. We ask that you include “Termination Agreement” in the subject line.

If you terminate your participation (i) after the date on which a settlement agreement is entered into with TikTok or (ii) after Take Back Your Privacy Foundation is appointed as the exclusive representative for a group you fall into, and you are awarded financial compensation, BGPL Funding I Limited will still have the right to their fee.