Indian government bans 42 Chinese apps for fear of cyberespionage

Following security risks and fearing Chinese cyberespionage attempts, the Indian Defense Ministry released an advisory at the end of November that indexes 42 Chinese mobile apps as dangerous, and asked border troops from the Indian Armed Force and Central Armed Police Personnel (CAPF) to urgently uninstall them from their smartphones.

Based on information collected by Indian intelligence agencies, the Indian government fears Chinese spies could collect critical information through malware and spyware in Android and iOS apps. The information is then sent to servers in China and could be used to get details on army location.

The potentially dangerous apps are: Weibo, WeChat, SHAREit, Truecaller, UC News, UC Browser, BeautyPlus, NewsDog, VivaVideo- QU Video Inc, Parallel Space, APUS Browser, Perfect Corp, Virus Cleaner (Hi Security Lab), CM Browser, Mi Community, DU recorder, Vault-Hide, YouCam Makeup, Mi Store, CacheClear DU apps studio, DU Battery Saver, DU Cleaner, DU Privacy, 360 Security, DU Browser, Clean Master – Cheetah Mobile, Baidu Translate, Baidu Map, Wonder Camera, ES File Explorer, Photo Wonder, QQ International, QQ Music, QQ Mail, QQ Player, QQ NewsFeed, WeSync, QQ Security Centre, SelfieCity, Mail Master, Mi Video call-Xiaomi, and QQ Launcher.

Devices made in China, such as Huawei and ZTE, have already been banned from use by international border troops in the LAC region (Line of Actual Control), but the ban does not apply in the rest of the country.

“In response to certain reports, we would like to clarify that we are a Sweden based company. We are not sure why the app is on this list, but we’re investigating. Truecaller is not a malware, and all our features are permission based and are disabled by default,” said Truecaller in a statement.

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