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The Silicon Review Asia

Vietnam tightens cybersecurity rules, orders tech firms onshore

Vietnam tightens cybersecurity rules, orders tech firms onshore

Foreign firms will have 12 months to set up local data storage and representative offices in Vietnam

The Government of Vietnam has ordered technology firms to store their users' data locally and set up local offices. The move is in a bid to tighten its cybersecurity rules. The new rules will apply to social media companies like Meta, Google, and telecommunications operators and will come into effect on October 1. "Data of all internet users ranging from financial records and biometric data to information on peoples' ethnicity and political views, or any data created by users while surfing the internet must be stored domestically," the decree stated. Authorities will have the right to issue data collection requests for investigation and to ask service providers to remove content if it is found violating the government's guidelines, the decree added. After receiving instructions from the Minister of Public Security, foreign firms will have 12 months to set up local data storage and representative offices. According to the decree, they will have to store the data onshore for a minimum period of 24 months.

Two tech firms contacted by Reuters, Meta and Google, did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Vietnam is run by the Communist Party, which maintains tight media censorship and tolerates little dissent. It has tightened internet rules over the past few years, culminating in a cybersecurity law that came into effect in 2019 and national guidelines on social media behavior introduced in June last year.

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