Iran bans Pokémon Go

Iranians will no longer be allowed to capture Pikachu and characters alike as officials cite security concerns

Tags: Cyber crimeIran
  • E-Mail
Iran bans Pokémon Go Though Pokémon Go had not officially launched in Iran, players had been able to download the game by using Virtual Private Networks. (Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images)
By  Aasha Bodhani Published  August 9, 2016

Iran has become the first country to block access to Pokémon Go due to security concerns.

The country's High Council of Virtual Spaces, which supervises online activity in Iran has placed a full ban on the augmented reality game, meaning it will now be illegal for Iranians to capture Pikachu and other Pokémon characters.

Though Pokémon Go had not officially launched in Iran, players had been able to download the game by using a different GPS location or with the use of a Virtual Private Network.  

The ISNA news agency quoted Abolhasan Firouzabadi, the head of Iran's Supreme Council of Virtual Space, as stating: "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."

He added: "There are many problems with the game and security-wise, it can create problems for the country and our people."

Though security reasons are behind the ban, officials have not elaborated further.

Iran is not the only country to set restrictions against using the game. Pokémon Go players in Japan have been advised not to venture into Fukushima's evacuation zone, users have been warned to stay away from landmine areas in Bosnia and police officers in Indonesia are forbidden from playing the game whilst on duty.

Related: Rio 2016: Gymnast racks up $5,000 in data charges playing Pokémon Go

Related: Motorists playing Pokemon Go in Saudi will be fined $80

Related: Saudi Arabia issues fatwa against Pokémon Go

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code