The Indian government is taking steps to ban 232 apps that provide betting and loan services in the South Asian market.

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said that it is working to enforce a ban on 138 betting and gambling apps and another 94 loan services apps, in an effort to prevent the misuse of citizens' data and ensure the country's integrity.

The apps sought to mislead customers into taking big debts without realizing the terms and there were concerns that they could be used as tools for espionage and propaganda.

Last year, the Reserve Bank of India introduced strict regulations for digital lending firms, requiring increased transparency and control for customers, and obtaining explicit consent before collecting any data.

India has also previously blocked over 300 apps including Tencent’s Xriver, Garena’s Free Fire, NetEase’s Onmyoji Arena and Astracraft and 50 more apps with apparent links to China early last year.

The Indian government also banned dozens of apps including ByteDance’s TikTok, Xiaomi’s Community and Video Call apps and Alibaba Group’s UC Browser and UC News in mid-2020 amid geopolitical tensions between the two neighbouring countries.