The Indian government continued its crackdown on Chinese technology firms by banning 118 apps, citing security concerns threatening India’s sovereignty.
India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said in a statement, it received complaints on misuse of mobile apps on Android and iOS devices, claiming specific apps were “stealing” and “surreptitiously transmitting user data” without permission to servers outside of India.
“In the interest of sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India and security of the State. And using the sovereign powers, the government of India has decided to block the usage of certain apps, used in both mobile and non-mobile Internet enabled devices,” the ministry said in a statement.
Among the freshly banned 118 apps were: popular online game PUBG, video hosting service Youku, enterprise messaging app WeChat Work, news source Sina News and a VPN for TikTok. All of which the Indian government labelled “malicious”. It added the move will safeguard millions of Indian mobile and internet users.
“This decision is a targeted move to ensure safety, security and sovereignty of Indian cyberspace.”
The ban follows the government’s previous move to block 59 Chinese apps in June and a further 47 in July. The banned apps then included TikTok, UC Browser, Helo, Likee, Shareit, Mi Community, WeChat and CamScanner.