Not just TikTok, Twitter and Zoom are also in the dock in India
TikTok, Twitter and Zoom
coronavirus lockdownhas attracted sharper scrutiny on social media appsfrom Indian authorities. TikTokhas been in the news recently, after millions of Indians called for a ban on the app after videos promoting violence against women went viral.
- The National Commission for Women chief Rekha Sharma has said she will write to the Indian government seeking a ‘total ban’ on the app.
- On the other hand, a new petition has been filed against
- Zoom, too, has been called out for its security issues, and a new petition in the Supreme Court seeks to ban it in India.
To be clear, TikTok and Twitter are not new to scrutiny from the Indian authorities. Earlier in April 2019, TikTok was briefly banned in India by the Madras High Court for hosting ‘pornographic and sleazy’ content.
Twitter, too, has had its share of controversies in India. It has been termed as ‘toxic for women’ by non-governmental organisations like Amnesty International.
2020 has seen a fresh wave of outbursts against the social media platforms.
India’s National Commission for Women seeks a ban on TikTok
Now, these apps are in the news once again for wrong reasons. In a protest of sorts, millions of Indian users of TikTok have taken to uninstalling the app and rating it 1-star on the Google Play store. This happened after some TikTok users posted videos promoting violence against women and were subsequently roasted by popular YouTubers like CarryMinati.
The videos promoting violence prompted the National Commission for Women’s chairperson Rekha Sharma to step in. She said she would write to the Indian government seeking to ban the app.
I am of the strong openion that this @TikTok_IN should be banned totally and will be writting to GOI. It not only h… https://t.co/CmkjHYX4Ox— Rekha Sharma (@sharmarekha) 1589850382000
Ruling party leader wants action to be taken against Twitter
Vinit Goenka, a leader from the ruling party, Bharatiya Janata Party, has filed a public interest litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court, asking for a mechanism to curb fake news and instigative messages on the platform.
“The logic and algorithms that twitter usage should be shared and vetted by Indian government authorities or competent authority for screening anti India tweets,” the plea says, alleging that the social media platform has given a very long leash to "anti-nationals", "separatists" and the likes.
“KYC of all social media handles in India must be conducted for making social media safe and accountable and traceable,” the plea further added.
‘Zoom users vulnerable to cyber threats’ says a plea seeking ban on the app
Zoom has had its share of glaring security issues in the recent past. On several occasions, users have reported ‘Zoombombing’, which is essentially the digital equivalent of gatecrashing a meeting.
“Rather than lending a hand to people in need, Zoom violates the privacy of its millions of users by misusing and exploiting their personal information and falsely, deceptively and misleadingly advertising fictitious security benefits of the program,” said the plea filed in the Supreme Court, according to a PTI report.
“Zoom is reported to have a bug that can be abused intentionally to leak information of users to third parties. The app has falsely claiming calls are end-to-end encrypted when they are not,” the plea further added.
Zoom has already been banned by ten companies and government organisations around the world.
Researchers found and bought more than 500,000 Zoom passwords on the dark web for less than a cent each
How to ensure privacy and security while using Zoom
TikTok got 4 million comments on Google Play Store dragging down its rating to 1.3 — but it may not disappear yet