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Police probe massive leakage of personal data

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The Ministry of Public Security is investigating a case involving the personal data of 30 million people offered for sale online and suggested measures to handle the leakage.

At a Q&A session of the National Assembly on August 10, Minister of Public Security To Lam provided information about the case of personal data of 30 million people believed to be leaked from the Ministry of Education and Training and the Ministry of Health.

The ministry plans to hold a press conference to publicize the results once the investigation is completed.

According to Minister To Lam, the illegal trade of personal data has been rampant throughout the country in recent years and sold online through websites, accounts, social network groups and cyber hacking forums.

From 2019 to 2020, the Ministry of Public Security discovered hundreds of individuals and organizations involved in personal data trading and data appropriation.

“The amount of personal data that has been illegally collected and traded is nearly 1,300 GB, including sensitive and important personal data,” he stated.

Data disclosure in cyberspace has been caused by many factors, including users’ low awareness of protecting their personal data, data leaks while posting publicly or in the process of transferring and storing it for business purposes, as well as a shortage of adequate safeguards to prevent data appropriation.

A legal system for personal information protection is badly needed. Hence, the ministry has sought permission from the National Assembly Standing Committee for the promulgation of the Decree on Personal Data Protection.

The draft Law on Protection of Personal Information will be presented to the National Assembly in 2024.

Moreover, it is necessary to raise awareness among officials, civil servants and employees on the confidentiality of personal information. They should know the consequences of publicizing their personal data for the convenience of technology, according to To Lam.

As for the situation of fake identity papers and certificates, To Lam stated that many fake documents were offered for sale online at VND2-6 million each. In the past, the Ministry of Public Security had uncovered many large-scale counterfeiting organizations and seized thousands of their seals and tools.

The violators confessed to having forged various types of fake documents and certificates, including those of the university of pharmacy and medicine.

The Ministry of Public Security will support other relevant agencies in reviewing and detecting cases in which fake diplomas and documents are used, as well as take appropriate measures to investigate and break up counterfeiting organizations.

On August 10, Minister To Lam held a meeting to field questions related to the Government’s management of cybersecurity, the national cybersecurity system, solutions to prevent and strictly handle high-tech crimes, and the implementation of governmental resolutions related to crime prevention and control.

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