The Ministry of Information Technology of India has banned 59 applications of Chinese development companies.
According to a release, India's Ministry of Information Technology "has decided to block 59 apps since, in view of the information available, they are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, security of state and public order."
The list includes TikTok, the WeChat messenger, and the Chinese counterpart to Twitter — Weibo, along with others.
The blocking has been followed by numerous reports that some apps are used to steal and transfer user data illegally to servers located outside of India.
Despite the ban, the applications included on the list are still in the public domain in India. Still, forbidden apps can be easily downloaded from the Google Play and App Store in India.
Currently, one of the largest TikTok markets is in India. About 30% of the 2 billion downloads of the popular Chinese video-sharing service came from India.
TikTok was already blocked by an Indian court in April 2019, and its ban led to significant losses for the social media platform. Before the blocking that year, the service had nearly 300 million users from India. As a result, in addition to $500,000 of lost revenue, TikTok began to lose about a million new users every day.
Recently, Reddit user with the nickname Bangorlol, who examined the TikTok code, found out how it works. According to him, TikTok is a data collection service that pretends to be a social network.