China asks video game seller Tencent to suspend new apps roll out
- The move came after Beijing started to implement its Information Protection Law in November.
- Users can still use current versions of Tencent apps.
- The new rules have been introduced to keep a close tab on how technology firms use their users' data.
China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) has told technology giant Tencent, the world’s biggest video game seller, to suspend the roll-out of the new apps as well as updates to its products. The move came after Beijing started to implement its Information Protection Law in November, reported BBC.
However, users can continue to use the current versions of the apps which is available for download.
"We are continuously working to enhance user protection features within our apps, and also have regular cooperation with relevant government agencies to ensure regulatory compliance. Our apps remain functional and available for download," Tencent said in a statement.
Tencent owns the WeChat super app and QQ messaging platform.
China wants better supervision
The new rules have been introduced to keep a close tab on how technology firms use their users' data. The rule is part of China’s extensive policy to increase its supervision over some of the country's biggest technology companies.
Chinese state broadcaster CCTV reported that the MIIT had said new app roll-outs and updates from 24 November until the end of this year will be reviewed before they are allowed to be made available to the public.
Alibaba, Baidu summoned
Recently, MIIT has taken a series of actions against technology companies, including crackdowns on e-commerce firms, online financial services, social media platforms, gaming companies, cloud computing providers, ride-hailing apps and cryptocurrency miners and exchanges.
Due to the MIIT's latest action, Tencent's shares went three per cent down in Hong Kong on Friday.
On Thursday, China had summoned the cloud units of Alibaba and Baidu for telecom network fraud, Reuters reported.
The two Chinese tech giants had allowed users to access a large number of fraud websites on their cloud platforms, said the MIIT in a statement on its official WeChat account, adding that it required them to correct the issues.