China’s state censor will not license augmented reality (AR) games such as Pokemon Go until it has assessed potential security risks, Reuters reported.
Despite the popularity of Niantec’s Pokemon Go, the game has been linked to accidents as players try to capture elusive Pokemon and data privacy issues resulting from its geolocation features.
China’s State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television said it has “a high level of responsibility to national security and the safety of people’s lives and property”, and is working with other government departments to look into the game’s risks.
These include the “threat to geographical information security and the threat to transport and the personal safety of consumers”, according to a games panel of the China Audio-video and Digital Publishing Association, which is governed by the censor body.
Some Chinese companies have been developing AR games with location-based services for which the panel is also seeking advice from the government.
Pokemon Go also relies on Google services such as Maps, which are blocked in China.