Google Play Store removes Paytm app over violation of sports betting policies


Google Play Store, the official Android app-store, has removed the Paytm app from its list of apps on Friday over violation of its policies on sports betting activities.

The other Paytm apps like Paytm for Business, Paytm Mall, Paytm Money, Paytm Mall Store Manager and Paytm Instore Manager are still available for download and installation.

Paytm app, which has millions of active users who use it for cashless transactions, was “removed for violating Play Store’s policy on sport betting activities”, Google said.

“The app was blocked for violation of play policies – a clarification of our policy was released earlier today ahead of the IPL tournament,” Google told the news agency PTI in an email response. They further added that there will be no impact on users.

Paytm via a tweet informed users on Friday that the payments app will be back on Google’s Play Store and is temporarily unavailable. Paytm said, “It will be back very soon. All your money is completely safe, and you can continue to enjoy your Paytm app as normal.”

Google had published a blog post by Android Security and Privacy Vice President Product Suzanne Frey outlining their policies regarding gambling apps earlier today.

“We don’t allow online casinos or support any unregulated gambling apps that facilitate sports betting. This includes if an app leads consumers to an external website that allows them to participate in paid tournaments to win real money or cash prizes, it is a violation of our policies,” the blog post read.

The blog post explained that Google then asks the developers of the app to bring it under compliance of their policies. Once it is done, the app is restored on the Play Store. If the developer fails to follow or there are continuous violations of these policies then Google can “ terminate Google Play Developer accounts.”

Paytm app users can still use their app if it is installed on their phones. It is the 6th most downloaded fintech app, according to the Sensor Tower – a website that provides “enterprise-level data on mobile apps and publishers.”

Paytm has 450 million users and apart from being a payment app, it provides features like online shopping, gaming and banking along with other services.

(with inputs from PTI)

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