Ropes & Gray bans TikTok on work devices following privacy concerns

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Applies to lawyers and staff across firm’s global offices

Ropes & Gray has banned the use of TikTok on devices which receive work emails following privacy concerns raised by clients.

The firm-wide measure follows media reports that the popular short-video social media app, owned by Chinese tech company ByteDance, is able to access sensitive personal data stored on a device. Last month, TikTok was reportedly caught accessing users’ cut-and-paste data stored on their clipboard on Apple devices.

The blanket ban designed to better protect client confidentiality will apply to lawyers and staff across its global network, including its London office.

The latest comments from across Legal Cheek

Ropes’ reaction comes as TikTok, which has been downloaded more than two billion times globally, faces growing scrutiny after the Trump administration announced that it was considering banning the app across the US.

US bank Wells Fargo reportedly banned TikTok from all company devices last week, while Amazon recently backtracked on their demand for workers to delete the app over security concerns.

Cyber-security has become an immediate challenge for law firms as employees continue to work from home in the wake of COVID-19. As reported by Legal Cheek, research has shown that almost two thirds (63%) of home-working legal staff are storing files on their own devices, raising concerns about data security. Three percent even admitted that the computer they used for remote-work is not password protected.

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Why the hell was it allowed on work phones as it is? Surely that’s for your personal phone.



It applies to phones that have access to work emails.



Tik Tok is for the brain dead. A good test of character. I have asked interview candidates to tell me their favourite Tik Tok meme. If they have one then that they are heading for the reject pile unless a miracle happens from then on.



Old people are so funny. Absolutely terrified of the changing landscape of communication.



“Old people” make hiring and promotion decisions, sucker.



Indeed, that’s why it’s a shame they are so prehistoric in approach. It’s no wonder tech in law is so far behind the times. Ah well, you will simply get left behind I suppose.



By virtue of being old.

The vast majority interviewing candidates will either not have heard of it, or asking a Tik Tok related question would not cross their mind.

You’d need to be pretty unlucky to come across a close minded, cynical old f*cker who is asking Tik Tok related questions in order to try and catch people out and to ensure that they only recruit those with a similarly stuffy mindset.

Plenty of Tik Tok loving candidates will be recruited by law firms this year, next year, and the one after. Soon enough they will be making hiring decisions. No doubt a good few of those will end up wrongly turning up their noses at a new trend or social media platform. Hopefully not too many.


Close minded cynical old f*cker

There are quite a few of us. It is not about a “stuffy mindset”, it is about evidence that should the quality of the mind involved. Watching idiots dance for 10 seconds or re-enact Mario Kart with a laundry basket is a big big red flag.


Do you even have Tik Tok? I use mine to follow cooking, golf, chess and other content that is a far cry from people dancing or re-enacting video games. The content is not all catered towards 10 year olds. Generalising like that is like criticising the IQ of somebody who owns a television because there is a CBBC channel.


So it’s Youtube with lots more stupid dancing.

Anti Boomer Patrol

I have a TC with a respected international firm (even Legal Cheek commenters tend to have some respect for the firm, that says something) and I spent 20 hours a week on TikTok during lockdown. I still do spend a lot of time on the app, because it has a range of short entertaining, innovative and/or informative content that isn’t available elsewhere, once you scroll past the teenager dancing and Legal Cheek’s or Eve Cornwell’s painfully cringe legal TikToks.

Fight me.



What firm? DLA? Bakers? HL?



But mainly you watch it for the dance routines.



So you have second or third tier TC and one of thousands, yet somehow see your limited achievement as a badge of honour? Might be the limitations of your focus that are consistent with you spending so much time on Tik Tok.


Curious cat

What exactly is a second or third tier TC?



One that is not top tier. The clue is “a respected international firm”.

A nun

Not gonna lie, if you are a qualified lawyer or above the age of 22 and you use Tiktok you should be concerned. Because that speak volumes about the type of person you are (in a really bad way)



Too old/boring to enjoy some videos? That’s ok, some people like entertainment.



Entertainment for those with the attention span of a gnat and the depth of thought of one too. Tik Tok is for the mindless.



You sound like you tried getting into it and realised how old and detached you are, and as a result you’re feeling resentful about people that do enjoy it. That’s ok too.



No, I looked into it and realised life was too short to watch videos of the desperate seeking attention. I went back to the porn for the rest of the bus journey.


As opposed to being 22 or over and trolling on Legal Cheek comments like some of the sad saps here. Gotcha.



Make a Tik Tok video about it and crawl off to your safe space for a bit. You could do a little prepared dance routine while you cry and moan.



Load of rubbish this. There are some very boring, stuffy people in the legal industry. If you turn your nose up at Tik Tok, then you are likely to be one of them.

There are loads of different types of videos and content on Tik Tok. Anything from cooking tips/snippets, dance choreography, sporting clips/highlights, comedy/humour, etc. There is something there for everybody. The only real criticism you could level at it is the short length of the clips – but that is entirely the point of the platform… something short and snappy that you can look at for a few minutes.



These are the same people that find horse riding, croquet, lacrosse and conversation about ski trips to be fun. I’d rather discuss tik toks as office talk than those classist elitist conversations



But they are all tremendous fun. Still you stick to video clips of idiots dancing, cheap and basic, just like you.


Winner winner chicken dinner

I like horse racing. It is great. There is a lot of horse racing content on Tik Tok. Tik Tok is great. Horse riding is not fun. It is dull and boring. Horse racing is way better. Day out on the lagers. Get my tips via Tik Tok on the train on the way in. Stair shuffle up to get a decent view over the parade ring with wads of 50s in my hands. Now that is fun.


I think “winner winner” has proven the soundness of the point made above at 9:12am. And then some.


More like “something short and snappy that you can look at for a few hours”. That is the business model and they know the weak will of their target market. Brain dead bollocks for those with no attention span.



In one way, a rather strong attention span is required to stare for hours at a screen displaying such pointless rubbish, yet not get distracted by anything happening around you.



In this comment section: a bunch of 30 year old losers who don’t even know what is actually happening on TikTok, pretending they have the power to make hiring decisions and would do so based on poorly informed, subjective criteria.



Make a TikTok video about it. You can do a little dance routine to a rap track as you moan. Deep, deep, stuff.


Personally, not a nonce

The old people not realising that tiktok has an algorithm that pushes content based on their interests…so if all they see on tiktok is teenagers dancing…well then.



Out of curiosity, what content gets pushed to an entirely disinterested user?


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