Learn From Jung Kook: 7 Important TikTok Privacy Tips
Thanks to BTS and their fandom, I’ve learned a lot about music production, Billboard’s charting policies, and South Korea’s history. I’ve also learned, sometimes along with the members of the group themselves, about the importance of protecting your private accounts online.
This week, Jung Kook, BTS’ main vocalist and a chart-topping soloist in his own right, received a tough lesson about TikTok’s default account privacy settings when he accidentally exposed his private account name to his fans on social media.
The TikTok Untold
Jeon Jungkook, whose stage name is Jung Kook but is often referred to as “JK” or “Kookie” by fans, also apparently goes by “Ian.” We know this because the “Seven” singer posted a link to a TikTok dance challenge video to his profile on Weverse, a social media platform. Unfortunately, the 25-year-old entertainer shared more information than he intended. When fans clicked on the link, a banner popped up, broadcasting the account owner’s name for all to see.
Jung Kook’s small gaffe exposed the private account he says he uses for monitoring social media, which destroys his chance for retaining anonymity on TikTok. Thankfully, the “Euphoria” crooner is quick on his feet and showed good humor with quips about the incident on Weverse, a great new name for the TikTok account (letjungcook7), and changes to the account’s privacy settings.
How to Lock Down Your TikTok Profile
Many ARMYs (BTS’ fandom) are lovingly clowning Jung Kook right now, but we can all learn a lesson here: If you want to avoid exposing a lot of personal information while browsing TikTok, you need to lock down your account. To keep your information private, try the following tips:
Don’t share links from accounts you want to be kept secret. You can’t stop TikTok from broadcasting your screenname whenever you share a link, so avoid sharing a link from an account you’d like to keep to yourself.
Check your privacy settings. While using the app, navigate to Settings and Privacy and then tap Privacy. From that menu, you can toggle your private account on and off. Only approved users and followers can watch your videos if you have a private TikTok account. You can switch the account back to Public by tapping the toggle again.
Turn off account suggestions and contact syncing. If you don’t want nosy colleagues from four jobs ago sending you follow requests or viewing your content, tap “Suggest your account to others” in the Privacy menu and toggle off all suggestion options.
Revoke TikTok’s access to your information. There’s an option in the privacy menu that will allow you to revoke TikTok’s access to the list of Contacts on your phone. Keep TikTok from seeing who you are friends with IRL, and instantly improve your privacy on the platform.
Change your interaction settings. Within the Privacy menu, you can change the way other people can interact with you and your content. You can change the comments and messaging options, but to deter online creeping, you’ll want to keep your Liked videos, Post view history, and Profile view history turned off. These options are inactive by default. You can keep people from seeing who you are following in the Privacy menu.
Secure your TikTok account. Make sure no one else has access by enabling multi-factor authentication on your account via the Security menu. You can also see what other devices are logged into your TikTok account by tapping the Manage Devices tab. If you see devices you don’t use or don’t recognize, remove them.
Change your password. You shouldn’t be using the same password everywhere online, but if you are, this is your sign to switch things up. Download and use a password manager, and then you not only don’t have to create or remember your passwords, you don’t even have to type them ever again. Dashlane is my favorite premium password management app, and Bitwarden is an excellent free option.
Please, Just Let Jung Cook
Older generations usually associate various forms of social media with youth culture, and though Jung Kook is the youngest member of BTS, he’s also been the least active, at least publically, on social media platforms. Earlier this year, the entertainer famously deleted his Instagram account, which had more than 52 million followers. At the time of publishing, Jung Kook’s personal TikTok account is active and set to Public, so fans can view the videos he’s Liked.
Shying away from social media is usually a good idea for anyone in the public eye, but it may be the right move for us normal folks, too. Oversharing on social platforms can give scammers vital information about you that they can use for hacking attempts or phishing schemes. Posting photos and videos of your vacation could let burglars know when you’re away from home. Sharing health concerns publicly could lead to insurance companies denying your claims in the future.
Be like Jung Kook. Keep your public profile low and your personal boundaries high. Social media can be fun and informative, but it’s wise to respect the dangers it poses too.