During the meeting, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Vietnam Patrick Haverman commended the Vietnamese government’s efforts to provide online public services to its citizens.
However, despite the Covid-19 pandemic leading to increased use of online services, the number of people using these services is not high enough. Statistics from Vietnam’s Provincial Governance and Public Administration Performance Index (PAPI) survey in the two years 2020 and 2021 show that only 3.5% of respondents used the electronic portal of the national civil service.
To succeed in digital transformation, the protection of personal data in accordance with UN standards is essential, including features such as the fair and lawful processing of personal data; clarification of the collection and processing of personal data; collection of necessary personal data only; secure storage of personal data; ensure transparency and accountability.
However, the UNDP survey shows that most localities have not fully complied with legal regulations on privacy protection. For example, only 1/63 public service electronic portals and 3/63 provincial electronic portals display the contact details of the unit in charge of personal data protection. Only 9 out of 130 emails asking these e-portals about this receive an appropriate response.
One of the most concerning findings of the survey is the misunderstanding and misclassification of legal responsibilities among personal data managers, especially among the “government agency” (the people’s committee of cities, provinces), l “operational agency” (the corresponding Information & Communications departments) and platform developers. This could lead to no grounds for assigning responsibility the moment an incident occurs, which is extremely dangerous.