Feeds

Vietnam tightens noose on web freedoms with new decrees

Fines galore for gaming past curfew and anti-government tweets

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Vietnam has introduced severe financial penalties in its ongoing bid to stifle web freedoms, including a fine of $US5,000 for anyone using social media to spread propaganda against the state.

The ominous-sounding Decree 174 follows up on Decree 72, which came into force in September and limits the use of blogs and social media to “providing or exchanging personal information” as well as banning anti-government content.

Decree 174, which will take effect from January 14th, also takes a hard line on gaming.

It levies a fine of up to $5,000 on kids who play games after curfew, and similar sums for kids who use too much virtual currency, according to Vietnam’s ICT News.

There are also other fines for setting up gaming centres, providing games or advertising games without a license, and for producing games with inappropriate content. E-commerce doesn’t escape either, with Decree 185 issued to fine companies which operate without a license or those which don’t report changes to their sites up to $5,000 if the transgression is deemed deliberate.

Vietnam’s rapidly-developing economy is heavily dependent on ICT and the wonders of the web, but it seems its authoritarian government is determined to regulate, censor and intimidate wherever possible to maintain its grip on power.

It’s no surprise then that the country ranks 172nd out of 179 on Reporters Without Borders' 2013 World Press Freedom rankings, just one place above China.

Freedom House, meanwhile, ranked Vietnam seventh bottom in its Freedom on the Net 2013 report.

Just last month 30-year-old activist Dinh Nhat Uy was sentenced to 15 months under house arrest for “abusing” his freedom of speech by setting up a Facebook group calling for the release of his brother from prison. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.