Countries That Have Banned TikTok and Why

Countries That Have Banned TikTok and Why

Many countries are worried about TikTok’s safety and its ties to China. This week, the US Congress passed a law against ByteDance’s app. The US may be the first country to ban TikTok’s social media app because of privacy concerns. They just took another step in that direction.

Congress Takes Action to Compulsorily Sell TikTok Due to Security Concerns

On April 23, Congress passed a law banning the Chinese company that owns the app ByteDance if they don’t sell it within nine months. Many countries don’t let their governments use it because they fear downloading it could make private data public.

TikTok denies collecting more information about its users than other social media sites. It also said that the bans were “basic misinformation” and made with “no thought or evidence.” 

TikTok is owned by the Chinese tech company Bytedance, but the company says it runs itself and doesn’t give the Chinese government any information. It is working on a plan to store user data from the US in Texas and says that this will keep the data safe from China.

However, many countries are still wary of the platform because it has ties to China. Because Beijing has strict privacy laws about how companies can collect and store data, many Western tech companies, like Airbnb, Yahoo, and LinkedIn, have been leaving China or cutting back on their operations there.

Countries Where TikTok Has Been Banned Or Closed

●      India

India, next door to China, was one of the first places to block TikTok and other Chinese apps. When India and China fought in the mountains along their shared border, India blocked about 60 Chinese apps, including TikTok. A permanent ban has been in place since 2020. The reason given was to protect the data security of its citizens.

●      Afghanistan

On the other hand, the Taliban banned the app in Afghanistan in 2022, about a year after they took back power because they thought it was wrong. 

●      Iran 

People in Iran can’t use the app either. People in Iran say that TikTok has blocked IP addresses from Iran. However, Tehran’s totalitarian government has blocked the most popular social media sites like YouTube, X, Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook, and Telegram.

●      Other Countries

Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Nepal, and Somalia governments have also banned the TikTok app for the same reason.

Countries With A Partial Ban On TikTok

Not every case has banned the app completely. For example, Pakistan has blocked TikTok temporarily more than once because of inappropriate content. Most of the time, the app was made available again after the company changed its filters to block inappropriate content.

In Russia, this kind of content includes anything that shows the country’s invasion of Ukraine in a different light than the official story put out by the Kremlin. It’s also impossible for people outside of China to use the app; only the Chinese version can be used. 


People worldwide have different worries about TikTok, ranging from privacy and data security to moral issues. Some countries have completely banned it, while others have only limited it in some ways, usually because of rules about content. Because the platform is connected to China, it has gotten more attention, which has led to calls for divestment and ongoing discussions about data sovereignty and rules.


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