TikTok and Europol join forces with 11 countries to target online extremist content

During the operation, 2,145 pieces of content were flagged for review, including items associated with jihadism, violent right-wing extremism, and terrorism.

 Logo, Blade, Razor, Weapon

On September 28, an international effort called the ‘Referral Action Day’ unfolded as TikTok teamed up with Europol’s European Counter Terrorism Centre (ECTC) and 11 participating countries to combat the proliferation of suspected terrorists and violent extremist content on the internet. Europol has executed similar initiatives with various online platforms as part of an ongoing partnership to combat online extremism and protect fundamental rights.

Initiated by Spain and the ECTC’s European Union Internet Referral Unit (EU IRU), the exercise included the participation from law enforcement authorities in Czechia, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Malta, Portugal, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, with the primary mission to identify and address materials glorifying past terrorist acts or those involved in terrorism.

According to TikTok’s latest transparency report, it proactively removed 95% of violent extremist content. During the operation, 2,145 pieces of content were flagged for review. These included items related to jihadism, violent right-wing extremism, and terrorism.

Why does it matter?

The collaboration between a social media platform like TikTok and law enforcement agencies reflects the importance of a multistakeholder approach in combating online extremism. This year’s Action Day flagged more than 1200 posts compared to last year’s Action Day, indicating the need for an ongoing collaboration between law enforcement agencies and online platforms to combat the misuse of the internet for extremist purposes.