TikTok has undeniably taken the world by storm. Nowadays, references among the Millennials and Gen Z often begin with the video sharing app and with the ability to launch young influencer careers by simply dancing in a bedroom, it is hard to find someone that hasn’t downloaded the application globally. But like any technology, privacy is at its most vulnerable. During the rise of TikTok in late-2019, the American government deemed TikTok a security risk with two developers proving how vulnerable information is to hackers. Nonetheless, its quick growth is reminiscent to that of Facebook, but according to a new report, the country of India is taking no chances.
In a new ruling from India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology the ban will also stretch across 58 other Chinese-owned apps to re-establish India’s defence, security, “sovereignty and integrity.” According to TechCrunch, “nearly half of [India’s] 1.3 billion population” is online and would affect one-in-three smartphone users within the country.
The decision was reportedly inspired by “representations from citizens regarding security of data and breach of privacy impacting upon public order issues” and led by the Ministry with support with Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre and Ministry of Home Affairs. An official statement reads: “The compilation of these data, its mining and profiling by elements hostile to national security and defence of India. There has been a strong chorus in the public space to take strict action against apps that harm India’s sovereignty as well as the privacy of our citizens.”
TikTok owner, Beijing Bytedance Technology Co reported that the ban would cost the company $500,000 USD daily and will cost 250-plus jobs.
Applications set to be banned in addition to TikTok include, Shein, Clash of Kings, WeChat, Weibo, Vmate and more.