The Indian Government has intimated that it has banned 59 Chinese mobile apps including TikTok, Shareit, Club Factory, UC Browser and others citing “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.”
A press release issued by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology on Monday states further that the threats were of an emergent nature and that several complaints were received over the data security and privacy risks in the use of these apps by Indian users.
“On the basis of these and upon receiving of recent credible inputs that such Apps pose threat to sovereignty and integrity of India, the Government of India has decided to disallow the usage of certain Apps, used in both mobile and non-mobile Internet enabled devices.”Press note by Ministry of Electronics and IT
“The Ministry of Information Technology has received many complaints from various sources including several reports about misuse of some mobile apps available on Android and iOS platforms for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers which have locations outside India. The compilation of these data, its mining and profiling by elements hostile to national security and defence of India, which ultimately impinges upon the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a matter of very deep and immediate concern which requires emergency measure”, the press note states.
These concerns were received by the The Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN) as well, the press note adds. Moreover, it is stated that there have been similar bipartisan concerns, flagged by various public representatives, both outside and inside the Parliament of India.
Also stating that there has been a strong chorus in the public space to take strict action against apps that harm India’s sovereignty as well as the privacy of citizens, the Central Government has now announced a ban on 59 Chinese apps.
“This move will safeguard the interests of crores of Indian mobile and internet users. This decision is a targeted move to ensure safety and sovereignty of Indian cyberspace.”Press note by Ministry of Electronics and IT