Iran has become the first country to ban Pokémon Go officially due to non-specific “security concerns.” This decision was ruled by Iran’s High Council of Virtual Spaces – a judicial body responsible for monitoring the country’s online activity. Iran previously contacted Pokémon Go’s developers at Niantic Inc. before the official ban last week.
It is possible that a nationwide ban may not have been imposed if the game’s developers accommodated Iran’s request to 1- transfer some data server in Iran and 2- exclude some locations from the game. Head of the council Abolhasan Firouzabadi, told local news agency:
“Any game that wants to operate nationwide in Iran needs to obtain permission from the ministry of culture and Islamic guidance, and the Pokémon Go app has not yet requested such a permission.”
Abdolsamad Khorramabadi, another senior official, voiced his concern about the issues last week saying,
“There are many problems with the game and security-wise, it can create problems for the country and our people.”
Iran has become the first, and is by far the only country to ban this augmented reality game that has gained rapid popularity all over the globe since its July release. Despite the ban, Iranians are still playing the game using anti-filtering software and discussing their progress on social media. Iran has also banned Facebook and Twitter but a huge population of the Iranians still accesses it.
While Iran has officially banned Pokémon Go, impatient fans in Korea, India and China are still waiting for the game to be launched in their country. Do you play Pokémon Go? Do you think the security issues are really a cause for concern? Let us know!