Tips for Researching TikTok

There are a few tricks that can help a researcher looking at a TikTok account. We can look up archived versions of a TikTok account and we kind find what kind of phone and what kind of social media account was used when signing up for TikTok. There is also a tool that helps to search TikTok.

Web Archives

Archived versions of TikTok pages are actually saved in web archives. Archive.is has better data (saves full page and includes saved versions of the videos) but Archive.org is more likely to have saved versions of a given TikTok page. So it is worth checking both.

Archive.org

Here we see that Archive.org has 79 versions of the Tik Tok page we are researching.

Here is what the page normally looks like in TikTok

Here is one version in Archive.org, it only shows the bio information from the page. There were occasional examples of the page that showed the videos, but it was not possible to play any of them.

More often, I got this:

Archive.is

By contrast, when searching for the same page in Archive.is, there was only one captured version of the page available, but it had the full page and contents available, this includes ALL videos and they could be played too.

In addition, we I click on one of the videos, the following page opens up in Archive.is and the video itself is actually playing.

What Type of Social Media (and Phone) They Used To Sign Up

We can find a TikTok user’s what kind of phone the user has, another type of social media account they use (which they used to log into their TikTok account), and their unique account ID number all thanks to a method discovered by Jake Creps (@jakecreps, jakecreps.com).

This works by opening up a TikTok page, right-click on the screen and select view page source, then do a word search for “user/profile”, and you will find a line of code that looks like this:

<meta property=”al:ios:url” content=”snssdk1233://user/profile/6746264168812659717?refer=facebook“>

Note that:

1 – “meta property” identifies the user’s device as “iOS” or “android”

2 – “content” will provide the unique profile ID number, it is not entirely clear how much a profile ID is valuable, but it does not change and you can google the number with “tiktok” to pull up the account in question.

3 – “refer” will identify the social media type that the user was logged into when signing up for or logging in to TikTok. The most important aspect is that it shows another account.

Walkthrough With A Bit More Detail

Ok so here is a walkthrough for finding the social media type that was used to sign up/in, but with a bit more detail:

First, open a TikTok account’s page (you don’t need to have a TikTok account for this to work)

Right-click and choose “view page source”

Do a word search for “user/profile”

We see the profile ID number

If we wanted, we could google the number and we pull up the acccount.

Returning to the data we found, we see further along the same line that the “refer” section shows that the user has a Facebook account and the “meta” section shows that the user uses an Android phone.

And further to the right we see that the user also uses an iOS phone.

Search Tool

Finally, Osint Combine has a tool for searching TikTok. It is not a game-changer but it does make searching TikTok easier.

https://www.osintcombine.com/tiktok-quick-search

Interested in More?

BeenVerified has a very interested research guide with more tips. See  How to Find Someone on Tiktok: 6 Simple Tips 

Okay, that’s it!

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