On Thursday, shares of Chinese gaming and social media giant Tencent fell more than 2% after India
banned 118 mobile apps including the hugely popular PUBG. The stock traded 2.2 percent lower at HK$533 in the afternoon, on track to snap two straight sessions of gain.
The list of 118 banned Chinese apps also includes those from Baidu and Xiaomi’s ShareSave. The decision came after India stepped up pressure on Chinese technology firms after a stern face-off with
Beijing at the border.
Tencent PUBG Mobile ranks among the world’s top five smartphone games with over 734 million downloads. According to reports, there are approximately 50 million active PUBG players in India. The IT Ministry in its decision to ban these apps said that they “are engaged in activities which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, the security of the state and public order”.
“This decision is a targeted move to ensure safety, security, and sovereignty of Indian cyberspace,” the statement said, adding that the move would safeguard the interests of crores of Indian mobile and internet users.
Earlier in June, the government banned 59 mobile apps including Bytedance’s largely popular TikTok, Alibaba’s UC browser, and Tencent’s WeChat, also citing security concerns. Explaining its latest move, the ministry said it had received many complaints about the misuse of some mobile apps on Android and iOS platforms for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting user data to servers outside India.
The home ministry’s cybercrime center had also recommended blocking these “malicious apps”, the government said. The other Apps blocked include games, online payment services, dating sites, and software to edit selfies.
The Indian Army has been facing a series of clashes in Ladakh with China since May. On June, 20 Indian soldiers were martyred after a clash with the Chinese troops at Galwan Valley.
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