Don’t use TikTok’s built-in web browser, it’s watching you | TechBuzz

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Felix Krause, the developer behind the revelations about Facebook’s in-app browser, is taking on TikTok. According to him, the social network monitors everything you do.

At the beginning of August, Felix Krause made a lot of noise. By analyzing the browser code of Meta, present in Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and all the other apps in the bunch, the developer had come to the conclusion that Meta was spying on us, often violating the iOS and Android usage guidelines. A denunciation that did not please Meta, who had tried to explain through the voice of his spokespersons that the developer was wrong. He himself admitted to a few errors, even though the Meta browser tracks much more data than Safari or Chrome.

Satisfied with his discoveries, Felix Krause decided to go further. He created InAppBrowser, a tool responsible for analyzing the JavaScript code injected into a browser. This notably allowed him that TikTok goes even further than the others.

TikTok can read your passwords

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With his new tool, Felix Krause went to monitor some of the most popular apps, like TikTok, Instagram, Messenger, Facebook, Amazon, Snapchat et Robinhood (a scholarship application). Only the last two are privacy-friendly, the others have implemented code to get information they wouldn’t have with Safari, Chrome or another official browser.

Meta and ByteDance (TikTok) applications have one thing in common: they implement JavaScript code to obtain information about your browsing. In the case of TikTok, which confirmed the existence of this code to Forbes, the practice can even be dangerous. The in-browser code of the young people’s favorite social network monitors your keyboard, including when you insert a password or bank details. A particularly problematic practice for an application that aims to become a shopping giant, which therefore risks encouraging you to give your credit card. TikTok is also informed of all the links/images you click on, which may seem logical. Finally, the last criticism made of the Chinese group, TikTok does not put a button forward to open Safari or Chrome. The option is hidden.

Comparative InAppBrowser
A comparison between the different integrated browsers. TikTok is the worst, since it does not open a page in Safari or Chrome. // Source: Felix Krause

What to do with this information? Our recommendation is simple: always open the page in use in Safari or Chrome, even if doing so sometimes takes time. Even if nothing says TikTok uses this data (it is even likely that this is not the case, the developer is just saying that it is technically possible), as well go through really secure browsers.

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What about other giants like Twitter, WhatsApp or Google (Gmail, Maps…), not cited in the study? This is normal, they automatically use Safari or Chrome and do not have an integrated browser. With them, there is no risk.





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I am admin of techbuzz.asia blog & I provide tech-related news. As a part of my hobby, I make content related to technology and gadgets reviews too. I love to be a content creator apart from it, I am a full-time employee in an MNC company and manage blogs systematically. You can mail me at [email protected]

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