Govt bans TikTok, Shareit & 57 other Chinese apps; gets a thumbs up from Indian companies
These apps are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order, said government
The Ministry of Information Technology, invoking its power under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act and in view of the emergent nature of threats, has decided to block 59 apps. The government said in view of information available, they are engaged in activities which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order.
"Over the last few years, India has emerged as a leading innovator when it comes to technological advancements and a primary market in the digital space. At the same time, there have been raging concerns on aspects relating to data security and safeguarding the privacy of 130 crore Indians. It has been noted recently that such concerns also pose a threat to sovereignty and security of our country. 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 unauthorised 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 measures," the ministry said in a statement.
The Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre, Ministry of Home Affairs has also sent an exhaustive recommendation for blocking these malicious apps. This Ministry has also received many representations raising concerns from citizens regarding security of data and risk to privacy relating to operation of certain apps. The Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN) has also received many representations from citizens regarding security of data and breach of privacy impacting upon public order issues. Likewise, there have been similar bipartisan concerns, flagged 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 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.
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, it said.
Meanwhile, reacting to the move, Berges Malu, Director- Public Policy, ShareChat, said, "This is a welcome move from the government against platforms that have had serious privacy, cyber security and national security risks. We expect the government to continue their support for the Indian startup ecosystem."
Naveen Tewari, Founder and CEO, InMobi Group, termed the decision as the "digital aatmanirbhar moment" that most Indians have been rooting for.
"As the number one top video app on the Google Play Store, Roposo is very well positioned to lead this movement. Roposo will continue to build on the trust and love that 55 million Indian users have placed in us,” he added.
Acording to Neel Gogia, Co founder, IPLIX Media, the step will have a huge impact on thousands of Tiktok influencers who are dependent on brands for their survival.
"This step will impact thousands of Tiktok influencers who are dependent on brands for their survival. Brands will be impacted as well. They have already started reaching out to us to understand how they can realign their strategies to reach similar audiences. It will be interesting to see how influencers and brands change their strategies to adapt to the other platforms, We feel in 5-6 months, influencers can build their audience in these platforms (if they create relevant content)," he shared.
Sumit Ghosh, Co-founder of Chingari, put up a tweet on Monday night, saying the native app, being called the Indian alternative to TikTok, was witnessing 10,000 downloads every hour since the government announced the ban on the Chinese apps.
100,000 downloads per hour, guys please be patient! we are working on the servers and getting things up and running asap! pic.twitter.com/h3lGCbe4yl— Sumit Ghosh (@sumitgh85) June 29, 2020
The list of banned apps:
Clash of Kings
DU battery saver
Mi Video Call – Xiaomi
ES File Explorer
Viva Video – QU Video Inc
New Video Status
Cache Cleaner DU App studio
Hago Play With New Friends
Clean Master – Cheetah Mobile
QQ Security Center
V fly Status Video
WhatsApp, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook & Youtube