TikTok opens Dublin data centre as part of Project Clover European data security initiative

TikTok has opened the first of three new data centres in Europe, in Dublin, as part of Project Clover, the initiative it announced earlier this year to build a reinforced protective environment around its European user data. Migration of European user data to the Dublin data centre has begun, while construction is underway on the other two data centres in Norway and Ireland.

TikTok has also engaged a third-party European security company, NCC Group, to independently audit its data controls and protections; monitor data flows; provide independent verification; and report any incidents.

NCC Group is a longstanding cybersecurity company with offices across Europe, including Germany, Portugal, the Netherlands, Spain, Denmark and the UK. Teams from several European offices and the UK will work on this programme. The NCC Group is TIBER-EU accredited and a UK National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) approved CHECK company.

As the independent security provider, NCC Group will monitor data coming in and out of the secure environment to independently validate that only approved employees can access limited data types. NCC Group will also perform ongoing security assessments of the new security gateways TikTok is building around European user data, the TikTok app, its data centres, and other TikTok infrastructure.

NCC Group will also serve as a managed security services provider for TikTok’s security gateways, performing real-time monitoring to identify and respond to any suspicious or anomalous access attempts and provide assurance on the integrity of the enhanced security controls operations. It will validate that network traffic of TikToks European user data must pass through the security gateways.

TikTok said that all of these controls and operations are designed to ensure that the data of its European users is safeguarded in a specially-designed protective environment, and can only be accessed by approved employees, subject to strict independent oversight and verification. It added that in the coming months, TikTok and NCC Group will engage with policymakers across Europe to explain how this comprehensive system will work in practice.