Taxi app

Why China banned taxi app Didi days after IPO filing

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The rest of the world, which mostly does not include China, uses US apps; Google, Twitter, Facebook, Uber and their associated services, and many other super apps from Western tech companies, are absent in China. This is not new information, and it does not mean that the Chinese are excluded from the benefits of these services because the most populous country in the world reproduces or clones these tools for its natives.

The case in point here is Uber, which as we said is not available in China. However, there is Didi, which offers the same services as the US super app, and is huge in every way, including its US listing the other day.

Didi has since been ordered out of app stores by Beijing over issues with the collection and use of customer data.

Here is the statement released by the Nation Internet Information Office in China:

According to the report, after testing and verification, the “drip travel” app has serious violations of the law and the collection and use of personal information. The National Internet Information Bureau, in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Cybersecurity Law of the People’s Republic of China, notified the App Store to withdraw the “drip travel” application, requiring the drip travel technology Drip Co., Ltd. legal requirements, refer to relevant national standards, seriously remedy existing problems, and effectively protect the personal information security of the large number of users.

The statement does not reveal details of the issues related to the banning of the app. Chinese internet regulators only said they received information about security issues, tested the information, and finally verified.

The other day, Chinese internet regulators announced that new Didi registrations would be suspended to review a security issue. Note that Didi had been listed two days earlier, and this development led to a drop in the share price.

Sunday’s blow (Didi being pulled from stores) could be related to the review that halted the addition of new customers to Didi, although such a statement has not been released.

The moves can be extrapolated to indicate how the Chinese government regulates its internet space with an iron fist, and where Americans are part of the process.

Launched in 2016, Didi bought the Uber operation in China and has 377 million active users in China alone. It also manages operations in other countries such as Brazil, Australia and South Africa, and 13 others.