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TikTok confirms data portability API for UK users – three down, three to go.

Unlocking DMA data portability for UK users


We revealed back in February that Google was the first gatekeeper to confirm that UK users would benefit from its new data portability API, which was built in response to the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA). We applauded that positive step from Google, while also raising hope that Meta would make its improved data portability functionality available globally. It did.


Both Google and Meta have since continued to engage extremely openly and constructively with CODE and our members.


Sadly, despite our continued encouragement for wider geographic availability, the other four gatekeepers (Amazon, Apple, LinkedIn and TikTok) chose to limit their new data portability APIs to EU users only. This decision triggered our planned complaints to both the ICO and the CMA in the UK (as signalled in advance this blog), on the basis that these organisations were simultaneously breaching data protection law and competition law by restricting access to this new functionality. In each case, we complained to each of the gatekeepers directly, and notified them of our complaints to the two regulators.

Those formal complaints, as trailed in our earlier blog, are live and being considered by both regulators, and we look forward to them taking the necessary decisive action.

TikTok confirms UK plans for data portability

We are delighted to reveal that TikTok has now confirmed it will be making its data portability API available in the UK, and that this work is now underway.


This development is in direct response to our action, and we are grateful that TikTok has now taken this positive action in response to our feedback.


We will continue to press – directly with TikTok and indirectly via the UK regulators – for a more specific timeline for the implementation of this change.  


Three to go!

With each gatekeeper that opts to extend their data portability tools to the UK, the pressure then builds exponentially on the others to follow suit. It is increasingly evident that there is no justifiable legal basis for rejecting UK users’ data portability rights when a purpose-built API already exists to facilitate this exact outcome.


We are confident it is only a matter of time until the three remaining gatekeepers reach the same conclusion. Until then, we will continue to engage with and provide evidence to the ICO and the CMA with respect to our active complaints.

 

Get in touch if you’d like to know more about the work we are doing to advocate for effective data portability.

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