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Secrets to unlocking TikTok



So you’ve downloaded the TikTok app and have watched hundreds of videos showcasing popular music, travel ideas and funny cat moments on your “For You” feed. Now you’re thinking, how can I create videos too? Don’t feel intimidated. The app is super easy to use and allows anyone, as well as inspires everyone,  to be a content creator. 

With a variety of features, the app allows users to create their own mobile short-form videos that have the power to entertain the world. Go ahead and showcase your skills in music and acting, or post a few cool videos about your next weekend adventure. It’s creative, it’s fun, easy to use and jam-packed with entertaining local content.

Ready? Here are a few simple steps to create and curate your own TikTok channel.

1. Tap the “+” button at the bottom

Then, either hold the red button to shoot a video or choose a video from your phone’s gallery to upload.

2. Shoot

There are quite a few controls included in the TikTok video app, but don’t let that intimidate you. It’s really easy to get the hang of it once you know what the app can do:

●      Hold down the red button to shoot a video. When you lift your finger, your video will pause. By starting, pausing and restarting, you can shoot and combine multiple videos.

●      ‘Flip’ is the button you need to change from rear camera to front camera, perfect for the ultimate music video. 

●      Speed – tap this button to select your speed option.

●      ‘Filters’ hands you a library of cool filters to add special effects and stylish colours.

●      ‘Beauty’ will help you remove shadows and add on a layer of sophistication to your video.

●      ‘Timer’ will help you to better prepare – shooting will start after a three-second count-down.

Don’t forget to use the ‘Effects’ button while filming which gives you even more creative power and control over the visual effects in your video.

Want to add a sound to your video clip? Two ways:

Option 1: Tap the “Add a Sound” button at the top, which introduces you to the extensive TikTok library where you will find a ton of songs, playlists and sounds.

Option 2: If you want to use the same sound with a video on “For You” page, you can tap the ‘Music Circle Icon’ button at the bottom right corner, then tap the ‘Shoot’ button so that you can use the same sound with this user.

3. Edit

You may not get a perfect video on your first try, but that’s okay as you can go back and record again. You can cut sound, change the volume, pick a new sound or even change a filter on this page.

More about effects: Select filter effects or time effects and add them to any frame of your video. Some of the most popular 2019 South African effects have been the ‘SA face paint’ sticker, the ‘Cloned’ sticker and ‘Ugly Face’ sticker. 

4. Upload

Once you’re done editing, tap the ‘Next’ button to go through to the final stage of the process. Here you name your video, give it a description and add in hashtags. Keep an eye out for trending hashtag challenges – this is a great way to be part of viral content on the platform.

Safety first: Before you upload the video, make sure that you set your privacy settings according to your preferences. There are various options that allow you to restrict who can see and engage with your content. These features will help you stay safe on the platform.

Finally: You get to choose between a ‘Draft’ – put your video on hold for a bit until you’re ready – or a ‘Post’. Hit the last one if you want to post your video online and let the world (or just your local community) enjoy the experience with you!


For added information, visit “How to TikTok” on the app for a video guide:

Read more about how TikTok is taking SA by storm.


TikTok takes on COVID-19

The fastest growing social media platform in the world has also become an epicenter of public education about the coronavirus, attracting more than 30-billion views, writes ARTHUR GOLDSTUCK



The young have been getting a bad rap for wanting to party on while COVID-19 sends the world into lockdown. But a different movie is playing itself out on the social platform that is growing fastest among teenagers: TikTok.

Awareness campaigns by TikTok itself, collaboration with the International Red Cross, and spontaneous videos made by TikTok creators have combined into a barrage of information, education, awareness and social consciousness around the coronavirus.

Both globally and in South Africa, TikTok’s COVID-19 campaigns have gone viral.

The local #HayiCorona challenge, designed to remind people not to touch their face and wash hands regularly, has passed 1.5-million views. The TikTok collaboration with the International Red Cross, the #WashingHands challenge, has passed 12.6-million views.

One of the best-known participants in these challenges is the past year’s icon of South African talent, the Ndlovu Youth Choir, took up the global challenge with a 20-second hand-washing video. It put together a performance that brings tremendous energy to what can be a clichéd message, and ends with a punt for the Department of Health’s WhatsApp information service. The video can be viewed below.


Our community has limited access to running water. Follow these instructions on how to safely wash your hands using a bucket. ##coronavirus##washinghands

♬ original sound – ndlovuyouthchoir

“On a global scale, TikTok also partnered with the World Health Organization (WHO) to ensure that, while creators are still having fun and expressing themselves on the platform, they stay informed with COVID-19 information coming from a reliable source,” a TikTok spokesperson told us. “Through the partnership, the WHO has created an informational page on TikTok that offers information to curb the spread of the coronavirus as well as dispelling myths.”

The page can be viewed at

TikTok has hosted a number of livestreams with WHO experts, attracting users from more than 70 countries, tuning in for live question and answer sessions. It has also introduced labels on coronavirus-related videos, to point users to trusted information. Resources are also offered directly in the app and in a dedicated COVID-19 section of TikTok’s Safety Center, at

If users simply want to explore videos on the topic, they can search via the #coronavirus hashtag, or click on The hashtag has had an astonishing 33.8-billion views, indicating the scale of activity and interest around the topic on the platform.

Read more on the next page about how South Africans have embraced the campaign.

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On World Backup Day: backup, backup, backup



It was World Backup Day yesterday, 31 March, at a time when business continuity is threatened as never before. That makes calls for protecting email and defending against ransomware all the more urgent.

The global coronavirus pandemic has brought into stark relief many organisations’ lack of business continuity plans and policies. With more than two billion people around the globe in forced lockdown in wide-ranging government efforts to stem the tide of infections, an unprecedented number of employees are working remotely.

This interruption to the normal way of work is precisely what an effective and resilient business continuity strategy should plan for, says Heino Gevers, cybersecurity specialist at Mimecast

“Companies need uninterrupted access to critical business applications during times of disruption, including safe and secure web and email access for workers that are now operating outside the normal perimeters of the organisation,” he says. “In addition, comprehensive backup and archiving solutions should be ready to restore access to critical business applications should there be any unplanned downtime to ensure continuity until the crisis passes.”

According to Gevers, the current global crisis is likely to push business continuity up the list of priorities for many organisations that have been disrupted by the effects of the coronavirus.

“Organisations are facing new challenges to their productivity; for example in terms of technical support. If a remote user is infected with malware or ransomware, how does the IT team restore that device or do any remediation without being able to physically access it?”

Gevers advises that organisations implement tools that enhances the data protection capabilities of commonly-used tools such as Office365 and can leverage archived data to provide quick recovery of email data in the event of accidental loss, malicious attacks or technical failure. 

“As adoption of cloud-based business applications grow in the wake of forced lockdowns around the globe, companies need to ensure they have the tools to recover in any situation,” he says. “This includes a data management strategy that combines archiving, backup and data protection capabilities to allow for quick restoration of critical systems and applications in the event of disruption.”

Jasmit Sagoo, head of technology at Veritas for the United Kingdom and Ireland, warns that this is a golden age for cybercriminals looking for ransomware opportunities.

“As the global cost of ransomware continues to grow, this World Backup Day, Veritas is saying: ‘don’t pay up, back up!’,” he says. “Ransomware is said to generate an estimated annual revenue of $1 billion a year, and companies who are not consistent in backing up their data are allowing criminals to line their pockets.

“Ransomware attacks exist only because some businesses can’t survive unless the hackers give them back their data.  So, the key to survival is removing that reliance and being able to regain access to data, without engaging with the cybercriminals.  The best way to do that is with a sound backup strategy.

“Sagoo advises organisations to create isolated, offline backup copies of their data to keep it out of reach of any attackers.  They then need to proactively monitor and restrict backup credentials, while running backups frequently to shrink the risk of potential data loss. Businesses should also test and retest their ransomware defences regularly.

“Ransomware strikes without warning and it doesn’t discriminate between its targets – it can happen to any organisation, large or small. Despite their best efforts, most companies will fall to at least one attack. What distinguishes one victim from another is the ability to bounce back, which ultimately depends on its backup strategy.

“When ransomware hits, organisations that aren’t prepared often feel helpless to do anything other than to submit to their attacker’s demands.   That’s why we’re urging all businesses to use World Backup Day as a catalyst to get ahead of the situation and get their data protected.”

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