Government to ban 54 Chinese apps that pose threat to National Security

Government to ban 54 Chinese apps that pose threat to National Security

The union government has ordered to ban over 54 Chinese apps due to a threat to privacy and security of Indians. These Chinese apps belong to large Chinese technology firms such as Tencent, Alibaba and gaming firm NetEase and are “rebranded or rechristened avatars” of apps that have been banned in the country beginning from 2020.

As per the official notification of the ministry of electronics and IT, the latest order for banning the 54 Chinese apps are based on breaching the policy of transferring sensitive data of Indians to foreign countries servers such as China. It has also directed top app stores including Google’s Play store to block these applications.

Power of ban:

Meity (Ministry of information and technology) utilized its powers under the Section 69a of the Information Technology Act, 2000 to enforce the latest order.

The government has blocked a total of around 224 Chinese apps since June 2020 starting with about 59 apps in the first round in which some of the popular applications like TikTok, Shareit, WeChat, Helo, Likee, UC News, Bigo Live, UC Browser, ES File Explorer, and Mi Community included.

Google’s procedure:

By receiving the interim order by Government of India which has been passed under Section 69A of the IT Act, Google started its established process and notified the affected apps’ developers. Google has temporarily blocked the access to the apps that remained available on the Play Store in India.

With response to ban major tech firms like Tencent, Alibaba were not immediately available for comment on the issue.

The government has banned total 220 apps earlier in 2020 in three rounds. 43 Chinese apps in first round, 59 apps in September in second round and in third round 118 apps were banned.

The government had quoted “sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order” as reasons for the ban.

Question & Answer:

Q1. How many Chinese apps have been banned by Central Government recently?
Ans. 54

Q2. Under which section Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology has been given power to ban the app?
Ans. Section 69a of the Information Technology Act, 2000

Q3. Who is the union minister of Electronics & Information Technology ministry?
Ans. Ashwini Vaishnaw

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