It is worth noting that while PUBG was developed and published by the PUBG Corporation, which is a subsidiary of Krafton Inc, a company based out of Seongnam, South Korea, the game’s mobile version was developed by Tencent, a Chinese internet technology company. Tencent-owned mobile messaging application WeChat was one of the 59 Chinese apps banned in India last month due to data privacy concerns.
The 47 Chinese apps banned last week by the government include ‘lite’ versions of the previously banned applications. ‘Lite’ versions are those with limited functionality and no tech support. Apps such as TikTok Lite, Helo Lite and Bigo Live Lite were banned last week. The government hasn’t released a full list of the 47 banned apps.
Meanwhile, in a bid to assuage the concerns of the government related to data privacy, TikTok has said that it would be willing to set up data servers in India to store data of Indian users locally.
On Wednesday (July 29), TikTok India head Nikhil Gandhi reiterated in a blog post that the company hadn’t shared the data of Indian users with any foreign government, nor would it do so if asked in the future. “Throughout the duration of our operations, we have demonstrated an unequivocal commitment to complying with the local laws, including data privacy and security requirements,” Gandhi wrote.
The same day, it was reported that the government had asked the banned applications about their data sharing around specific events such as the Pulwama terror attacks in February last year, their links to Beijing, and content moderation policies for sensitive issues such as national security. The companies owning the apps were also asked to prove their independent credentials as a company with no links to the Chinese state.