TikTok responds to ban: 'Have not shared any information of our Indian users'
Nikhil Gandhi, India Head, TikTok has issued a statement saying that the company will discuss with concerned government stakeholders and submit clarifications
After the Government of India took a stand to block 59 Chinese apps, TikTok issued a formal response. Nikhil Gandhi, India Head, TikTok has said in a statement the company is in the process of complying with the development. He said that the ByteDance-owned company has been invited with the concerned government stakeholders to respond to and submit clarifications.
In the statement, Gandhi clarified that TikTok has always complied with all data privacy and security requirements under the Indian law. He added that no information has been shared with any foreign government, including the Chinese.
"TikTok has democratized the internet by making it available in 14 Indian languages, with hundreds of millions of users, artists, story-tellers, educators and performers depending on it for their livelihood, many of whom are first-time internet users," Gandhi stated.
Indian government's move to block 59 Chinese apps has been making headlines all over the world. The Ministry of Information Technology invoked Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, citing threats to India's security from Chinese forces.
"... 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," said the ministry in a statement.
Indians on social media have reacted favourably to the ban, with hashtags #RIPTiktok and #ChineseAppsBlocked trending. Indian companies have also welcomed the move. Native app Chingari, known as the Indian alternative to TikTok, has also witnessed a huge spike in downloads.
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