India bans 59 mostly Chinese apps including TikTok, UC Browser, WeChat

Ban comes after a deadly border conflict between the two nuclear-armed nations in which 20 Indian soldiers died

Reuters June 29, 2020
Popular among youngsters, TikTok has the maximum number of users in India, followed by China and the United States. PHOTO: FILE

NEW DELHI:

India has banned 59, mostly Chinese, mobile apps including Bytedance’s TikTok, Alibaba’s UC Browser and Tencent’s WeChat citing security concerns, the government said in a statement on Monday.

The apps are “prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order”, the ministry of information technology said.

The ban comes after a deadly border conflict between the two nuclear-armed nations earlier this month in which 20 Indian soldiers have died.

The banned Chinese apps included: TikTok, Shareit, Kwai, UC Browser, Baidu map, Shein, Clash of Kings, DU battery saver, Helo, Likee, YouCam makeup, Mi Community, CM Browers, Virus Cleaner, APUS Browser, ROMWE, Club Factory, Newsdog, Beutry Plus, WeChat, UC News, QQ Mail, Weibo, Xender, QQ Music, QQ Newsfeed, Bigo Live, SelfieCity, Mail Master, Parallel Space, Mi Video Call Xiaomi, WeSync, ES File Explorer, Viva Video QU Video Inc, Meitu, Vigo Video, New Video Status, DU Recorder, Vault- Hide, Cache Cleaner, DU App studio, DU Cleaner, DU Browser, Hago Play With New Friends, Cam Scanner, Clean Master Cheetah Mobile, Wonder Camera, Photo Wonder, QQ Player, We Meet, Sweet Selfie, Baidu Translate, Vmate, QQ International, QQ Security Center, QQ Launcher, U Video, V fly Status Video, Mobile Legends and DU Privacy.

A government press release announcing the ban stated: "The Ministry of Information Technology, invoking it’s power under section 69A of the Information Technology Act read with the relevant provisions of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules 2009 and in view of the emergent nature of threats has decided to block 59 apps since in view of information available they are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order".

The press release further said that the Ministry of Information Technology has received "many representations raising concerns from citizens regarding security of data and risk to privacy relating to operation of certain apps."

Popular among youngsters, TikTok has the maximum number of users in India, followed by China and the United States.

TikTok crossed the 2 billion mark soon after surpassing the 1.5 billion mark in the first quarter of 2020.

WITH ADDITIONAL INPUT FROM INDIA TODAY


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