Vietnam ranks 100th in the world and lowest in ASEAN in cyber security. Last year, it suffered 15,000 cyber attacks, which caused losses of half a billion USD.
In the first 5 months of this year, agencies reported more than 4,000 hacking incidents. Security risks increase 300% per year, posing severe challenges to Vietnam, which is embarking on the 4th industrial revolution.
Law adoption on the right track
Vietnam made the right decision when it adopted the Law on Cyber Security at last week’s National Assembly session.
Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang explained, “Cyber security is an essential issue as it affects national security and is a special concern of countries and international organizations. Cross-border cyber attacks are on the rise, seriously impacting the political and economic stability of countries. Efforts to improve cyber security are hampered by a lack of legal institutions and capacity. In this context, the adoption of the Law on Cyber Security was necessary.”
Citizens’ legitimate rights protected
The law prevents security risks and safeguards national sovereignty and interests and social order. It also protects the legitimate rights of citizens.
National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said at a recent meeting with voters: “The scope of application of the law includes national security, social order and safety, and the legitimate rights of organizations and individuals. Will freedom of information be violated if we give preferences to national security and social safety? These things have been calculated to ensure that personal freedom will not be harmed. The law mainly prevents and fights violations on the internet without hindering normal use of the cyber world. Lawful activities will be protected.”
The new law does not restrict freedom of expression. It only lists acts which are defined as illegal by the Penal Code.
Vo Van Thuong, Head of the Party Central Committee’s Commission for Communications and Education, briefed voters in Dong Nai on the issue, “The Law on Cyber Security never violates citizens’ freedom of speech. On the contrary, it enables citizens to practice this right in accordance with the law. Everybody can say whatever they want in compliance with the law. The law will help adjust interactions between citizens, between citizens and society, and between citizens and the State.”
Compatible with Constitution and international treaties
The Law on Cyber Security does not aim to obstruct foreign investment. It strictly regulates online businesses to create a healthier cyber environment.
So, the new law is in line with Vietnam’s Constitution and does not hinder the implementation of international treaties Vietnam has signed.