India Bans 118 Apps, Including PUBG Mobile

India has today banned 118 apps, including the popular game PUBG Mobile, according to Medianama. The apps were accused of being engaged in activities "prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, security of state and public order" by the Indian Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.

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Thus far, the Indian government has banned 224 apps this year, mainly due to implied security concerns with regards to Chinese ownership. In June, India banned 59 apps including TikTok and WeChat, and banned another 47 in July.

"The Ministry of Electronics and 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 defense of India, which ultimately impinges upon the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a matter of very deep and immediate concern which requires emergency measures," the Ministry said in a statement.

The Ministry explained that bipartisan concerns were flagged up about the large number of apps, "by various public representatives, both outside and inside the Parliament of India. 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 our citizens." On the basis of "credible" information, evidencing the functionality embedded in apps that allowed for "data harvesting practices," the apps were deemed by the Ministry to be "a severe threat to security of the State."

Concerns about rogue data harvesting practices on iOS are regarded as being of the same severity as on Android. Apple and Google will now be forced to remove the apps from their respective app stores, effective immediately.

A Parliamentary Standing Committee specifically discussed the need for a ban on PUBG Mobile in July. PUBG Mobile is owned by Chinese tech company Tencent, which was likely the reason for its inclusion in the ban. PUBG was said to be among the most popular games in India prior to today's ban. The country was also one of the largest markets for TikTok, prior to its ban in June. The extended app ban list also includes two apps that claimed to offer access to TikTok via a VPN.

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Tag: India

Top Rated Comments

DoctorTech Avatar
14 months ago
I am glad to see India taking a proactive stance on privacy / data harvesting issues. I am not a beta tester so I have not personally seen the new privacy features in iOS 14 but I am looking forward using them in the very near future. I take my privacy seriously but I feel like I am in the minority, too many people have the attitude that "I have nothing to hide" and they do not realize the risks associated with leaking even seemingly harmless personal data all over the Internet.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
szw-mapple fan Avatar
14 months ago

I am glad to see India taking a proactive stance on privacy / data harvesting issues. I am not a beta tester so I have not personally seen the new privacy features in iOS 14 but I am looking forward using them in the very near future. I take my privacy seriously but I feel like I am in the minority, too many people have the attitude that "I have nothing to hide" and they do not realize the risks associated with leaking even seemingly harmless personal data all over the Internet.
Banning specific apps with a vague reason is a pretty bad way to go at it. There will always be apps that will take the place of the banned ones that do the same thing. Also, since this is mainly banning Chinese apps it’s likely this order stems much more from economic protectionism and retaliation than actual concern for user data. India needs a common standard in the law like GDPR so developers are aware of a standard they need to follow.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
d5aqoëp Avatar
14 months ago
Good Riddance. I am glad that someone took the initiative. Trump.. your turn...
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
justperry Avatar
14 months ago

I am glad to see India taking a proactive stance on privacy / data harvesting issues. I am not a beta tester so I have not personally seen the new privacy features in iOS 14 but I am looking forward using them in the very near future. I take my privacy seriously but I feel like I am in the minority, too many people have the attitude that "I have nothing to hide" and they do not realize the risks associated with leaking even seemingly harmless personal data all over the Internet.
This is not the way to do it, banning Apps is way to time-consuming for government bodies, a better way is to make laws that forbid data mining, or what I prefer, a law that says all your Data is yours, there should be a central place that you could go to to delete all your data that is mined.

It's time for the Internet to change, my data is mine, it should be possible to not share any data if you opt for that.

*This is just political, as with the states banning Apps.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving Avatar
14 months ago
India plays no games.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Wildkraut Avatar
14 months ago

Please post some balanced views instead of far leftist drivel.
Ok, then just raw numbers.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democracy_Index


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Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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