Pokemon Go raises privacy concerns as Chinese fans await release

Source:Global Times Published: 2016/7/14 19:43:01

Millions of fans in China are eagerly waiting for Nintendo's hit smartphone game Pokemon Go, while experts say the game would bring potential risks such as breach of privacy.

Even though the game is still not available in the Chinese mainland officially, the hashtag "PokemonGo" has garnered 330 million views on Sina Weibo, with most people discussing how to access the game through a third-party software and virtual private networks.

An earlier post of the official account of Pokemon Go on Facebook declaring that the game will not be available in China was later deleted for unknown reasons, and Nintendo has already been applying for trademarks for the game in China, according to joyme.com, a information website.

Meanwhile, security issues related to the game have also become a matter of concern for Chinese netizens.

"Pokemon Go has been given full access to the Google accounts, which means it could get access to users' information such as their Gmail, Docs, addresses and search history," iFanr, a WeChat public platform, reported.

"In China, the major security issue related to the Pokemon Go is that the third-party distributor will very likely add backdoor Trojan horse virus to the installation package which gives remote access to your smartphones," Wang Biao, security expert from wooyun.org, a website security information platform, told the Global Times on Thursday.

In Pokemon Go, users use GPS and mapping capabilities in mobile phones to let players roam the real world to find "PokeStops" stocked with supplies, and hunt cartoon character monsters to capture and train for battles, the AFP reported.

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