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India bans TikTok and 58 other apps as tensions with China escalate

India’s Ministry of Electronics and Info Technologies said in a assertion Monday that it had been given a lot of problems about misuse and transmission of user details by some cellular apps to servers outside India.

“The compilation of these details, its mining and profiling by components hostile to national stability and defence of India, which ultimately impinges on the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a make a difference of quite deep and instant worry which calls for emergency steps,” the ministry stated, listing 59 apps together with quite a few prominent Chinese ones that will be matter to the ban.

Whilst the Indian government’s assertion did not point out China by name, the ban comes as military services tensions amongst the two nations around the world carry on to escalate pursuing lethal border clashes before this thirty day period that left at minimum 20 Indian soldiers dead. Several Indians have named for a boycott of Chinese goods and companies, significantly from China’s dominant tech market.

“There has been a potent refrain in the public place to take stringent action in opposition to applications that hurt India’s sovereignty as perfectly as the privacy of our citizens,” the govt extra. Other well-liked Chinese apps on the list consist of the video clip sport Clash of Kings, messaging app WeChat, social community Weibo and image app CamScanner.

TikTok, the vastly common movie platform owned by Chinese tech giant Bytedance, has an estimated 120 million consumers in India, producing the place one particular of its biggest markets.

Setting up neighborhood management groups in international locations these types of as India has been “crucial to our world accomplishment,” a TikTok spokesperson mentioned in a statement.

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“The ByteDance workforce of all over 2,000 workforce in India is committed to doing the job with the govt to show our commitment to consumer security and our motivation to the place all round,” the assertion explained.

This is not the very first time TikTok has run into trouble with the Indian federal government. The app was briefly blocked in India final yr soon after a court docket dominated that it could expose kids to sexual predators, pornography and cyberbullying. The application was reinstated a week afterwards after successfully desirable the court’s decision.
Even though India’s diplomatic tensions with China are beginning to have a knock-on impact on business enterprise and tech, a comprehensive decoupling may perhaps be a lot easier mentioned than performed. China dominates India’s enormous world wide web marketplace — the world’s next largest, with close to 600 million people — both of those in components and application. Chinese organizations this sort of as Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo and OnePlus account for more than half of India’s smartphone industry, according to field figures, and Chinese tech giants Alibaba (BABA) and Tencent (TCEHY) are significant buyers in some of the country’s most useful startups.
However, the ban will be “a blow to the Chinese application market that loses a sturdy put in foundation outside its dwelling state,” in accordance to research firm Canalys.

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