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Government may ban BGMI in India again: Here's why

A senior official from the Union government’s cybersecurity division, responsible for coordinating with law enforcement agencies, has recommended discontinuing the app.

Written By: Om Gupta New Delhi Published on: March 07, 2024 17:52 IST
Battlegrounds Mobile India
Image Source : BATTLEGROUNDS MOBILE INDIA Battlegrounds Mobile India

The government of India is reportedly planning to ban Krafton’s popular battle royale game, Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) in India again. According to sources familiar with the matter, Indian authorities are concerned that the data collected by the game could pose a threat to national security and lead to cyber-attacks. 

As per a report by News 18, a senior official from the Union government’s cybersecurity division who is responsible for coordinating with law enforcement agencies has claimed that the agency has recommended the discontinuation of the app. 

The report did not mention clear reasons but it has cited factors like the entry of Pakistani national Seema Haider into India and other crimes behind this move. 

The game servers are based in the US, but Indian agencies are concerned about the possibility of data being transferred to servers located elsewhere and used in cyber-attacks, which could compromise the security of the country.

An intelligence agency report highlighted that there were violations that could pose cyber threats by collecting user data for profiling, with the intention of carrying out targeted cyber-attacks on Indian users. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) communicated this concern to the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (Meity).

The intelligence agency report also said that the app has several problems, but the most significant issue is that it is communicating with servers located in China, either directly or indirectly. Sources have confirmed to the publication that other apps that have "rebranded" are also communicating with servers in China and are under scrutiny.

Next week, an important meeting is scheduled to take place to address the situation. The company will present its case, and central agencies will review their stance before making a decision about the game's future.

Although BGMI was briefly unblocked on several app stores, concerns about user harm and addiction are still under review and pending further investigation.

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