In this year 2020, we are fighting three pandemics, coronavirus, TikTok and stupidity. This generation is dancing and lip-syncing over this Chinese video app called TikTok. No matter where you are, you see people making these videos and not only this, you also see them doing duets with people sitting on the other side of the world. These videos go viral on the internet making mostly teens and young adults popular with no real talents but good looks and good lip-syncing skills. However, we also see some really good and informative videos, but that’s rare. Not to mention, some very heart touching TikTok videos are also found especially those involving pets.
In the past, we’ve seen so many big tech companies getting involved in scandals related to private data leak. What happened with Facebook in 2018 is not hidden from anyone. However, what bangorlol a senior software engineer with a 15-year experience in the tech industry discovers about TikTok is much more alarming. He has been analysing a lot of apps but has never encountered an app as secure as TikTok from being scrutinized. He reverse-engineered the Chinese video-sharing social application and made some sneaky discoveries about it which he shared in a comment during a discussion on Reddit two months ago. Scroll down to unravel the truth about TikTok.
credits: Marco Verch
TikTok, the 2nd most downloaded free app in 2019 is actually a Chinese spy dressed as a social networking application.
Here’s what they do…
Think twice before turning on location on your phone.
That’s a pure spy move…
App’s functions are made complicated to debug for programmers.
TikTok, the 4th most downloaded application on the Apple app store and 3rd on the Google play store. No one knows how they’re sabotaging their users by invading their privacy. They make the user’s videos go viral and gain public attention. The users are unaware that the app is not only keeping track of their personal information like name, date of birth, contact information etc, but also all the information about their hardware that includes information about phones like contacts, wifi, IP address, service providers and more. Here’s what bangorlol said:
“The last several years of my career has been based around reversing mobile applications, analyzing how they work, and building additional third-party functionality around them. A rough example would be me noticing that Twitter doesn’t show you a sequential timeline (no idea if they do or not) on the website but does on the app. I’d go into the Android or iOS version, find the requests that get the correct data, and build a third-party tool (app, website, browser extension) to give users this functionality.”
Now, that is a huge security breach!
And people think they are “struggling,” have real “talents” and are “influencers”… 2 minutes of silence.
Don’t know where are all the “feminists” now and why aren’t they raising their voice at this… It’s undoubtedly a crime that needs to be addressed.
So, according to sources, it took Chinese developers 200 days to develop and deploy the original version of the application and they made sure that the app is unhackable. Bangorlol had a hard time debugging.
“TikTok put a lot of effort into preventing people like me from figuring out how their app works. There’s a ton of obfuscation involved at all levels of the application, from your standard Android variable renaming grossness to them (bytedance) forking and customizing ollvm for their native stuff. They hide functions, prevent debuggers from attaching, and employ quite a few sneaky tricks to make things difficult. Honestly, it’s more complicated and annoying than most games I’ve targeted.”
A normal application wouldn’t need that much of your personal information to make your user experience better. Maybe just a little in-app activity would be fine, but tracking the hardware? Something is fishy…
People don’t take privacy as seriously as it should be taken. They think it’s normal to give away their personal information as they haven’t done anything wrong and have nothing to hide. But think of it this way, would you give out your bank information and your child’s information or your spouse’s personal information to a complete stranger? No, you definitely wouldn’t. Then why trust an application blindly?
“The general consensus among most ‘normal’ people is that they can’t/won’t be targeted, so it’s fine. Or that they have nothing to hide, so ‘why should I even care?’ I think the apathy is sourced from people just not understanding the security implications (at all levels) of handing over our data to a foreign government that doesn’t discriminate against who they target, and also doesn’t really have the best track record when it comes to human rights. The app could’ve changed fingerprinting techniques or added/removed some of the nasty things they do. I strongly encourage security researchers who are much smarter than me and have more free time to take a look at the app and scrutinize every little detail they can. There’s a lot of stuff going on in the native libraries for at least the Android version that I wasn’t able to figure out and didn’t have the time to investigate further.”
All these applications are far better than TikTok and we’re good with their policies. They don’t have much to hide.
And we’re pretty convinced why we shouldn’t.
“TikTok might not meet the exact criteria to be called “Malware”, but it’s definitely nefarious and (in my humble opinion) outright evil. There’s a reason governments are banning it. Don’t use the app. Don’t let your children use it. Tell your friends to stop using it. It offers you nothing but a quick source of entertainment that you can get elsewhere without handing your data over to the Chinese government. You are directly putting yourself and those on your network (work and home) at risk.”
Let’s take a look at what people said regarding this issue.
A pretty good explanation.
“This is business! I do business.”
Some were just being witty.
Now, this will keep us up all night thinking.
Guess China just wants attention.
This user is smart. Decoding all the secret messages.
It’s for the best that we keep our children safe and secure. Better safe than sorry. After learning so much about TikTok, we should refrain from using it and letting it exploit our children. This application has set a lot of false standards for beauty and there is certainly NO real talent in lip-syncing over somebody else’s words. The Chinese developers were smart. They designed this app in a way that allows anyone to become famous. While there is nothing wrong with being famous, it is certainly giving the Chinese exactly what they want.
Let us know what you think about this huge revelation about TikTok in the comments below. Do not forget to share this valuable piece of information to spread awareness regarding a very serious issue that is security and safety.