After announcing a ban on 59 Chinese apps on the grounds of national security and data privacy, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology is adding more apps to the list. According to an order issued on Friday, July 24, the ban will be extended to 47 Chinese apps which were clones of the previously banned 59 Chinese apps.
The new list of 47 banned apps will be released soon and is most likely to include alternatives or lite versions of the apps that were previously banned in the country on June 29. Some of these include TikTok Lite, Helo Lite, ShareIt Lite, Bigo Lite and VFY Lite, all of which are reportedly unavailable on the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. According to a Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology official, “The apps were found to be operating despite the ban via these versions. They have been taken down from application stores.”
A report suggests that a list of over 250 apps has been prepared as well that will examine for any user privacy or national security violations.
The government of India had announced a ban on 59 Chinese apps last month saying they were ‘prejudicial to sovereignty, integrity and security of the country’. The apps were deemed to be a threat to the sovereignty of India, and came in light of India and China’s Galwan Valley clash. The list included popular short video service TikTok, browser and content app UC Browser, file sharing service Shareit, women-specific fashion shopping app Shein, popular mobile game Clash of Kings, and more.