Vietnamese Government seeks to combat cybercrime but at what cost to online freedom of speech?
Vietnam’s government is taking steps to combat online scams and other forms of cybercrime by making it mandatory for users of Facebook, TikTok, and other social media networks to verify their identities using real-time identity verification. According to the Global Anti Scam Alliance, Vietnam has one of the highest rates of online fraud in Asia. However, there are concerns that this measure will infringe on online freedom of speech and be used to silence criticism of the ruling Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV).
Key takeaways from the move for Identity Verification on Social Media Platforms:
- The Ministry of Information’s Authority of Broadcasting and Electronic Information has announced that an amendment to the Telecommunications Law will be made later this year, requiring individuals and groups to confirm their identities when registering an account on social media platforms.
- Unverified accounts will be dealt with, whether they are on domestic or international platforms like Facebook, TikTok, or YouTube, according to Deputy Information Minister Nguyen Thanh Lam.
- According to the Global Anti Scam Alliance, Vietnam has one of Asia’s highest rates of online fraud.
- The Vietnamese government has been increasing its crackdown on social media users and dissidents for speech posted online.
- TikTok is the subject of a “comprehensive” investigation by Vietnamese authorities, who claim that the network’s “toxic, offensive, false, and superstitious” content “poses a threat to the country’s youth, culture, and tradition.”
- With the seventh-biggest Facebook user population and the sixth-largest TikTok user population in the world, Vietnam boasts one of the greatest national social media user bases.
- Vietnam has been increasing its crackdown on social media users and dissidents for speech posted online, which includes the production and spreading of “anti-state propaganda”.
- In addition to creating new regulations to restrict which social media accounts can broadcast news-related information, the Vietnamese government has established cybersecurity legislation requiring Facebook and Google to remove items that are regarded to be dangers to national security within 24 hours of receiving a government request.
- Vietnamese authorities have recently launched a “comprehensive” probe into TikTok, arguing that “toxic, offensive, false, and superstitious” content on the network “poses a threat to the country’s youth, culture, and tradition.”
- The removal of anonymity will mark a further setback to online freedom of speech in Vietnam, creating a situation in which any online communication can theoretically be monitored by the party-state.
Identity verification is increasingly important in the digital age, with biometrics and verification helping prevent online fraud and identity theft. While mandatory identity verification for social media users can combat cybercrime, it also raises concerns about privacy and free speech.
Benefits of identity verification:
- Biometrics and verification improve online security and make it easier to replace traditional passwords.
- They help prevent identity fraud by verifying a user’s identity through unique physical characteristics.
Balancing security and privacy:
- Governments and tech companies need to work together to find a solution that combats online fraud while protecting the rights of individuals online.
- It is important to balance the benefits of identity verification with concerns about privacy and free speech.
Overall, while identity verification is a good thing for online security, it is essential to ensure it is implemented in a way that is fair, just, and respects individuals’ rights.
Try IDcentral’s Identity Verification Solution with AI-Enabled Face Biometrics for real-time identity checks!
Sumanth Kumar is a Marketing Associate at IDcentral (A Subex Company). With hands-on experience with all of IDcentral’s KYC and Onboarding Technology, he loves to create indispensable digital content about the trends in User Onboarding across multiple industries.