Indonesia blocks Yahoo, Paypal and gaming sites for license violation

The PayPal app logo seen displayed on a mobile phone in this illustrative photo from October 16, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas White/Illustration

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JAKARTA, July 30 (Reuters) – Indonesia has blocked search engine Yahoo, payment company PayPal (PYPL.O) and several gambling sites for failing to follow licensing rules, said a manager on Saturday, provoking a backlash on social media.

Registration is required under rules published at the end of November 2020 and will give authorities sweeping powers to compel platforms to release certain users’ data and remove content deemed illegal or “disturbing public order” within four months. hours if they are urgent and within 24 hours otherwise. Read more

Several tech companies had rushed to register in the days leading up to the deadline, which was extended to Friday, including Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O), Meta Platforms Inc (META.O) Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp and Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O). Read more

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Semuel Abrijani Pangerapan, a senior official with Indonesia’s communications ministry, said in a text message that websites that have been blocked include Yahoo, PayPal, and gaming sites like Steam, Dota2, Counter-Strike, and EpicGames, among others.

PayPal, Yahoo’s parent private equity firm Apollo Global Management, and US game developer Valve Corporation, which operates Steam, Dota and Counter-Strike, did not immediately respond to requests for comment. EpicGames could not be reached for comment.

Hashtags such as “BlokirKominfo” (block communication ministry), Epic Games and PayPal were trending on Indonesian Twitter, with many written posts criticizing the government’s decision as harming Indonesia’s online gambling industry and businesses. freelancers who use PayPal.

Pangerapan said the government would find a solution for people to withdraw their deposits from PayPal, which could include reopening access to its website for a short time, he told Metro TV.

Authorities will unblock websites if they follow registration rules, he said, defending the measure as a protection for Indonesian internet users.

With an estimated 191 million internet users and a young, social media-savvy population, the Southeast Asian nation is a major market for a host of tech platforms.

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Reporting by Gayatri Suroyo; Editing by Stephen Coates and David Evans

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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