TikTok under investigation for possible facilitation of human trafficking & child privacy violations

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Friday, February 18, 2022
Survivor opens up about being 'groomed' for sex trafficking at school
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As part of Houston-area school campuses introducing the new "No Trafficking Zone" law, a sex trafficking victim offers her story of being groomed while she was a teen.

AUSTIN, Texas (KTRK) -- Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is investigating TikTok for potential facilitation of human trafficking and child privacy violations.

The video above is from a previous report.

"Chinese-owned company TikTok may be complicit in child exploitation, sex trafficking, human trafficking, drug smuggling, and other unimaginable horrors," Paxton said. "I will get to the bottom of these concerns and make sure Big Tech doesn't interfere with the safety and security of Texans."

RELATED: Survivor talks on being 'groomed' as a teen for sex trafficking at school amid Texas' new law

Paxton issued two civil investigative demands on the company.

TikTok Inc. is being asked to acknowledge the number of reports and notifications involving; prostitution, compelling prostitution, promotion of prostitution, sex trafficking, online solicitation of a child, possession of child pornography, production of child pornography, child sexual assault, forced labor, domestic servitude, labor trafficking, debt bondage, human smuggling for the purpose of trafficking and human smuggling for the purpose of sexual assault.

RELATED: TikTok stars Charli, Dixie D'Amelio navigate life with family in new Hulu docu-series

Paxton is asking for receipts and demanding proof of action to these claims, if any. The CID must be returned to Paxton's office no later than March 18, 2022.

TikTok must also expose how many videos have been removed in violation of their terms and conditions and what action was taken to maintain users' safety. A post can be removed on TikTok if it includes violent and graphic content, nudity, explicit content, danger in child safety, sex trafficking related content, and labor trafficking related content.

TikTok is one of many social media platforms that has skyrocketed in popularity in recent years. Some of the app's most well known users are under 18.

RELATED: Mom: Amazon Alexa encouraged 10-year-old to try dangerous 'outlet' TikTok challenge