Vietnam’s Ministry of Public Security (MPS) has draft a decree guiding the enforcement of Law on Cyberspace which provides that foreign firms have to store Vietnamese social medial user database in the country.
Vietnam is among the nations with the largest number of Facebook users in the world.
Under the draft document, foreign firms are subject to the regulation once they set up branches or representative offices in Vietnam. The list includes those providing one of the services on the Internet and in the telecommunications sector, services in cyberspace, hosting services, database sharing, domain service providing, e-commerce, online payment, intermediary payment services, shipping services, social network and media, online games, and emails.
Facebook and Google are among firms subject to this law, media expert said.
Personal information to be stored includes name, date of birth, place of birth, nationality, career, title, residential place, address, email address, phone number, identity number, citizen code, passport number, social insurance card, credit card, health status, medical records, and biometrics.
Database created by Internet users in Vietnam include uploaded or synced information, content generated from exchange and interaction among Internet users.
Firms are requested to store personal information for at least a year and at least three years for uploaded or synced information.
Certain companies have to store database, or set up branches or representative offices in Vietnam within a year after an official request by Minister of Public Security.
Major general Luong Tam Quang, head of the MPS’ Office, said at a press conference on November 3 that the draft decree meets international commitments to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Worldwide, there are 18 countries requiring foreign firms to store database of local users in their countries, including the US, Quang added.
The MPS makes the draft decree available for citizens’ feedback for a month beginning November 2.
Minister - Head of the Government Office Mai Tien Dung said that Vietnam considers cyber security as important as food security and social order, but the government will ensure no harm to investment environment or businesses.
Vietnam’s increasingly youthful population is a lure for digital companies and roughly 64 million people in the country use Facebook, of which, 42 million people are connected on Facebook daily.
The Law on Cyber Security was approved in June and will come into force next January.
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