TikTok defends its user privacy and security measures after India ban

TikTok India head said app would never share information with the Chinese government and will meet with concerned Indian government stakeholders.

TikTok defends its user privacy and security measures after India ban

TikTok is defending its data privacy and security provisions in India following the Indian government's sudden decision to ban the video sharing app—along with 58 other mostly Chinese-owned apps—citing security risks related to India's sovereignty.

"TikTok continues to comply with all data privacy and security requirements under Indian law and has not shared any information of our users in India with any foreign government, including the Chinese government," said Nikhil Gandhi, head of TikTok, India in a statement obtained by Campaign. "Further if we are requested to in the future we would not do so. We place the highest importance on user privacy and integrity."

Gandhi said TikTok has been invited to meet with "concerned government stakeholders" and will have a chance "to respond and submit clarifications". 

He went on to defend TikTok's importance in India, arguing it has helped to democratise the internet by making its content available in 14 Indian languages and noting "hundreds of millions of users, artists, story-tellers, educators and performers depending on it for their livelihood, many of whom are first time internet users." 

Last month, TikTok faced public outrage in India, including from Rekha Sharma, the chairperson of the National Commission for Women, after a video making fun of the victims of acid attacks was posted. Sharma had called for TikTok to be banned.

Contacted by Campaign at the time, TikTok stated that it does not allow content that risks the safety of others, promotes physical harm or glorifies violence against women. TikTok emphasised that as a platform for user-generated content, it needs to follow internal procedures to delete content but the video was removed by the blogger who posted it. 

The move also comes amid tense Sino-Indian relations following deadly troop clashes along the Chinese and Indian Himalayan border.

Currently, TikTok claims 200 million users in India, including 120 million monthly active users. According to SenseTower, installations in India contributed about 44% of TikTok's total downloads in September 2019.

Related Articles

Just Published

8 hours ago

Agency of the Year 2022

See the full list of winners for markets including APAC, Southeast Asia, ANZ, South Asia, and Japan/Korea.

9 hours ago

Agency of the Year 2022 winners: Southeast Asia

See the shortlist for the Southeast Asia region in the 2022 Campaign Asia-Pacific Agency of the Year awards.

9 hours ago

Agency of the Year 2022 winners: Australia/New Zealand

See the winners for the ANZ categories in the 2022 Campaign Asia-Pacific Agency of the Year awards.

9 hours ago

Howatson+Company and Special Group dominate AOY ...

Ogilvy wins Gold for Australia Creative Agency of the Year while Special Group performs well in both markets. But it's independent agency Howatson+Company that picks up the most Golds overall.