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Vpostcode is a national postal address coding platform, developed by the Vietnam Post. It provides information about address codes and the locations and coordinates of more than 23 million addresses.

Vpostcode is a tool to assign digital addresses to households. The code has two parts, with 1 of 5 characters of the national postal code and 2 of 7 characters of an open location code, which assigns address codes and positioning on the digital map platform.

Launched in May, the platform is used to generate postal address codes to authenticate a citizen. It can provide a solution to the problems of finding medical addresses, fire prevention, and service addresses on the digital map. The digitisation of addresses will pave the way for e-government and administrative procedure reform, a press release has claimed.

Vpostcode aims to combine the national postal address coding platform with online public service portals to improve services to citizens. With Vpostcode, people will only need to declare their addresses once on Vietnam Post’s PostID (electronic authentication system) to use personal codes with their addresses for several different public services.

Users can type their postal address codes in the online public service portal and will receive authentication. They do not need to go through declaration procedures with complicated figures and data, the release explained. Once the online public service portals are connected with Vpostcode and PostID, the address codes will be sent to the Vietnam Post, and a delivery person will go to the registered addresses to receive or give documents.

Currently, Vpostcode has more than 23 million addresses. However, according to the Deputy General Director of the Vietnam Post, the data is collected by the organisation, so it needs to be checked, which can only be done with the cooperation of local authorities.

A representative from the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) emphasised the important role of local information and communication departments in verifying addresses and then making them available to administrative public service applications. An Giang, Hanoi, and Da Nang plan to apply Vpostcode on a trial basis.

Vietnam Post has also proposed turning postal address codes into standard data to connect systems, encouraging public service procedures to have standards and guiding businesses and people on how to use postal address codes for services.

A representative of the Tay Ninh Information and Communication Department proposed taking another step forward by connecting Vpostcode with Post ID to link electronic systems. With the aim of developing a digital map, postal address code, and postal address databases into a common platform, Vpostcode is built in a way to create ecosystem connections. If a user wants to open a bank account online, they can log in with their identification codes and get PostID authentication at the national public service portal. Banks would grant accounts immediately after authentication and verification, the release noted.

Address databases play an important role in the digital economy. In e-commerce, some websites have implemented customer address authentication services to avoid fake addresses, which make it difficult to deliver items to owners, affecting postal delivery performance. Other business fields, including electricity, water, gas, telecommunication, and security services, also need exact address information to increase customer satisfaction.

Vietnam is all set to host the ITU Digital World 2020 which is expected to attract hundreds of technology businesses from across the globe.

The Ministry of Information and Communications recently held a press conference to share updates around the organising of the event. The ITU Digital World 2020, a global tech event for governments, corporates, and tech SMEs, will be held virtually from 20-22 October on a technology platform developed by MIC and military-run telecom giant Viettel.

According to a press release, the event will be hosted online and will feature numerous events such as the ministers’ roundtables with ITU member countries, forum sessions, virtual exhibitions with the participation of international giants from the United States, the European Union, Japan, South Korea, and others.

At the press conference, Pham Tam, the Deputy Minister of Information and Communications noted that this is the first time that the ITU has collaborated with a country to host such an event. ITU Digital World 2020 is wide open to all businesses, creating an opportunity for business exchanges between Vietnamese and international businesses.

The platform integrates many options so that participants can join in the plenary session, thematic sessions, or visit the pavilions. Businesses can choose to design their booths in 2D or 3D forms at a symbolic fee. The organisers will not restrict the number of participants, and this online platform is expected to accommodate 100,000-200,000 visitors.

It is also an opportunity for Vietnamese firms to promote their image, thus enabling them to expand their market share globally. Specifically, the virtual exhibition will include virtual booths, introducing digital products and services, and solutions of overseas businesses.

Meanwhile, the ministerial roundtables will include discussions about digital strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic and in the post-COVID-19 landscape, as well as orientations in boosting cooperation among ITU member countries in the implementation of digital transformation programs. This will also provide opportunities for the ministers and leaders of businesses to enter dialogues on the policies and the strategies to maintain the role of ICT in the prevention and fight against the pandemic and to serve economic recovery.

The forum will be divided into three sessions in three days, focusing on three key topics, namely connectivity, digital transformation, and sustainable development. For Vietnam, the co-hosting of the ITU Digital World 2020 is of great significance, contributing to enhancing the country’s international position and affirming itself as one of the rapidly developing and dynamic countries in ICT and an active and responsible ITU member.

Additionally, the event will enable domestic ICT firms to foster partnerships with leading technology companies from around the world, while contributing to advertising the image of a dynamic and developing Vietnam that is active and proactive in international integration.

Vietnam expects the number of digital businesses to increase to 70,000 by 2025 and 100,000 by 2030. According to a draft national strategy on digital businesses, the workforce of digital businesses is expected to increase to 1.2 million over the next five years and 1.5 million by 2030. These businesses’ annual export value would grow by 10-20% in the 2020-2025 period and 20-30% beyond 2025. By 2030, digital businesses are expected to account for 10% and 20% of GDP by 2025 and 2030, respectively.

The Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC), on 25 September, introduced a Vietnamese virtual assistant platform, developed by the Army Telecommunication Industry Corporation (Viettel). Named the Viettel Cyberbot, the platform aims to help businesses automate customer care processes based on Vietnamese language processing technologies.

According to a press release, the Viettel Cyberbot uses artificial intelligence (AI) technology to understand the messages that customers want to convey. It automatically improves the system based on real interactions. The platform also helps businesses build an automatic switchboard system by interacting with customers by message (chatbot) or by voice (callbot).

The virtual assistant uses language processing and can help the callbot’s voice sound natural, almost like a real human voice. A distinctive feature of the Viettel Cyberbot is the combination of speech processing technologies with Vietnamese natural language processing technology at the same time.

Specifically, in each communication with users, the system can simultaneously handle speech recognition, guess customers’ intent, process information, and answer customers. It creates a complete solution that is fully applicable and flexible according to real situations.

Viettel Cyberbot is expected to help businesses optimise up to 40% of their customer care resources while improving the customer’s experience and satisfaction. The developers are seeking ways to improve Viettel Cyberbot into a comprehensive Vietnamese virtual assistant platform to be deployed as an independent customer care switchboard system without the need for an internal switchboard.

The launch of Viettel Cyberbot is part of a series of events to introduce “Make in Vietnam” digital platforms in the realisation of the National Digital Transformation Program by 2025, with a vision to 2030, as approved by the Prime Minister.

In August, MIC debuted the akaChain blockchain platform, developed by Vietnam’s largest tech firm. It supports enterprises in quickly building their business network systems and distributed applications using blockchain technology. It shortens the time spent on several tasks like electronic-know your customer (eKYC), credit scoring, customer loyalty programs, and origin tracing. Soon, it will be further developed for strengthened security and transparency.

In Vietnam, early research and application of this technology will be an opportunity for the country to actively keep pace with the development of the global economy. With the potential of blockchain, it is likely that soon these technical applications will dramatically transform lives.

Earlier this month, OpenGov Asia reported on the Viettel AI Open Platform, an AI platform, developed by Viettel. The platform provides platform technologies using AI to help automate, optimise, and efficiently operate organisations and businesses via the world’s most advanced techniques. The platform is currently focusing on areas such as Vietnamese speech processing technology, Vietnamese natural language processing technology, and computer vision technology.

Vietnamese enterprises have gradually mastered core technologies and developed technology platforms for digital transformation. MIC created an initiative to weekly launch Vietnamese platforms to honour and promote Vietnamese ICT products. So far, dozens of platforms have been launched.

The Ho Chi Minh (HCM) City Business Association recently unveiled a digital transformation program for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to help improve their competitiveness.

The program will be implemented in collaboration with the HCM City Computer Association and its members as a part of the city government’s efforts to help SMEs gain better access to digital transformation solutions at reasonable costs. Under the scheme, a committee for digital transformation under the management of the HCM City Business Association and a digital transformation training centre for enterprises will be established.

According to a press release, a portal will be built to support the digital transformation efforts, and a digital transformation solution package called Service Catalog will be established to support businesses. The business association also introduced two basic digital transformation packages, the X-Starter (for start-ups) and X-SME (for SMEs), to be provided by reputed members of the computer association.

Speaking at a press conference held to announce the program, Chu Tien Dung, the chairman of the HCM City Union of Business Associations, stressed the importance of good infrastructure and a legal framework for digital transformation.

Enterprises have recognised the importance of technologies in their operations and management. Digital transformation will be the element to help them improve their competitive capacity and develop sustainably. “The association is willing to support and assist enterprises in undertaking digital transformation if they face any hurdles in implementation.

The chairman of the computer association, Lam Nguyen Hai Long, noted his association is working with other business groups in the city to publish a catalogue of IT products for enterprises’ digital transformation efforts. He recommended that the city should provide free IT infrastructure for SMEs, and IT enterprises should offer digital transformation services at reduced prices.

The city should choose local enterprises to provide technologies for the program because similar projects are already being carried out by IT enterprises in other provinces and cities, he added.

HCM City aims to become a smart city with e-government, e-enterprises, and an electronic society by 2030, and set up a database by that year to assist with this. By 2030 it also aims to push all public services online and provide them on multiple platforms, including mobile devices. The e-economy is expected to account for 40% of the city’s economy.

The rate of individuals and enterprises having electronic accounts for payments will exceed 85%. To obtain these goals, the city will strengthen communications and improve the awareness of its workers, the public and enterprises, and create shared databases.

Experts said the digital transformation would affect all areas of the economy like health, education, transport, finance-banking, tourism, agriculture, logistics, environment, and energy.

Earlier, the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) launched a campaign to review and remove malware nationwide this year. It aims to enhance the country’s network security, as OpenGov Asia reported.

The campaign intends to reduce the malicious code infection rate by 50%. It also aims to cut the number of Vietnamese IP addresses in ten popular botnets – a collection of internet-connected devices infected by malware that allow hackers to control them – in half.

The National Digital Transformation Program notes that ensuring network safety and security is key to digital transformation. All IT equipment, products, software, information systems, and investment projects have mandatory components on network safety and security. The ministry has clarified cyber safety and security as a prerequisite for e-government development and digital transformation.

Authorities in the central city have put on trial the DaNang Smart City app for smartphone users to access public information services and connect with local authorities. The Deputy Director of the city’s Department of Information and Communications, Tran Van Thạch, noted that all local residents and tourists can download the app to search for information related to public services, tourism, rescue, bus trips, open data, smart car parks, hotlines, or send comments and complaints to the local government.

He said the application would be a step towards the city becoming ‘smart’, an objective the city has been following since 2014. Local authorities were available for all online connections or switchboard 1022; zalo 1022 and chatbot.  In 2016, the city launched to get feedback on city services from the local community.

The online portal, available in English and Vietnamese, allows residents and tourists to conveniently post opinions and suggestions, as well as complaints on urban, environmental, administrative, and tourism-related services. Apps for public bus routes (Dana Bus and Bus Map) are also available from the Apple and Google Play stores.

All problems related to security, tourism, public disorder, environmental pollution, and administrative procedures sent via the website will be dealt with within three working days.

Da Nang was the first city in Vietnam to offer free wireless internet, with a maximum of 20,000 connections at a time for locals and tourists on major streets in the city, including living quarters, schools, and beaches. Da Nang plans to become a smart and green city by 2025.

According to statistics of the Department of Informatics, by September this year, the rate of online public services at level 4 reached 19.1%, nearly 4.2 times higher than in 2018. Nine ministries and agencies under the government and 15 provinces and cities reached a rate of over 30%. Typically, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) have provided 100% of online public services at level 4.

Earlier, MIC launched an online portal, which provides data on state agencies in service of political and socio-economic activities, contributing to the process of e-government building in Vietnam. New digital services, in the process of a digital government building, as well as open data will be provided on the portal. This will make it easier for the public to use them to serve research, study, or product invention, as well as offer feedback to state agencies to improve operating efficiency.

The state-owned group Viettel also recently developed an AI platform, which is part of a chain of events to introduce Made-in-Vietnam digital platforms to serve the national digital transformation program for 2025, with a vision to 2030 approved by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

As OpenGov Asia reported earlier, the platform is currently focusing on areas such as Vietnamese speech processing technology (Speech Processing), Vietnamese natural language processing technology (Natural Language Processing), and computer vision technology (Computer Vision).

The Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) and the Cuban Ministry for Communications held an online training course: “Designing and developing big data systems” for Cuba. It was officially opened at Hanoi and La Habana. The training course took place within a week with the coordination of the Embassy of Cuba in Vietnam and two of Vietnam’s leading ICT groups: VNPT and Viettel.

According to a press release, the objective of the course was to provide advanced knowledge about big data such as analysing, designing, and developing big data systems for IT application and e-government development in regulatory agencies.

The course will aid Cuba to solve challenges and tools for big data as well as related content. It attracted nearly 50 attendants from Cuba’s Ministry of Communications, ministries, sectors, corporations, and ICT enterprises.

Topics conveyed by Vietnamese lecturers and experts from the Authority of Information Technology Application (MIC), VNPT, and Viettel included: general knowledge about big data; big data processing; the storage and handling of big data;  infrastructure requirements; how to manage big data using IPv6; analysis and presentation tools, models, methods and techniques math for analysing and integrating big data, etc.

The event is one of the activities in a series of activities celebrating the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and Cuba and the Vietnam – Latin America Relationship Development Plan in 2020.

In the framework of cooperation between the two ministries, in July 2019, MIC coordinated with VNPT, Viettel, and Bkav to organise training courses on cybersecurity in Havana for Cuba. Furthermore, to promote the specialised ICT cooperation between the two, MIC undertook several activities like participating in the La Havana international book fair in Cuba, publishing two books in Spanish and copyright granting activities, exchanging radio and television programs, and promoting images and the relationship between the two countries.

In the coming time, MIC will host an investment promotion conference in the field of ICT with Latin American countries in October and continue to host a 01 information security training course for Cuba, scheduled for November.

Vietnam has also been providing support to Laos’ digital transformation. As OpenGov Asia earlier reported, thanks to a program under Viettel, all citizenship data has been uploaded to the system, improving the capacity to manage data and information about people, and helping reduce administrative procedures. This is the first time that Laos has implemented the management of electronic civil status instead of the registration of civil status as before.

The unit in Laos was the first licensed by the Central Bank of Laos to officially deploy mobile money and is also the only company developing this service in the country, offering a new secure and quick payment method for more than six million people. This field is expected to generate 30-50% of Unitel’s telecoms revenue in the future. Founded in October 2009, the Viettel subsidiary operates across all 17 provinces and cities in Laos and has led the market for eight consecutive years. It is also the Laos government’s partner in implementing the country’s key e-government systems.

The Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) has launched a campaign to review and remove malware nationwide this year. It aims to enhance the country’s network security.

The campaign intends to reduce the malicious code infection rate by 50%. It also aims to cut the number of Vietnamese IP addresses in ten popular botnets – a collection of internet-connected devices infected by malware that allow hackers to control them – in half.

The National Digital Transformation Program, approved by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in early June 2020, notes that ensuring network safety and security is key to digital transformation. All IT equipment, products, software, information systems, and investment projects have mandatory components on network safety and security. The ministry has clarified cyber safety and security as aprerequisite for e-government development and digital transformation.

According to security firms, malware infection in Vietnam has decreased but remains high when compared to other countries. Statistics showed that the country has about 16 million IPv4 addresses, of which about three million IP addresses are regularly blacklisted by many international organisations, while two million IP addresses are regularly found in botnets.

The campaign will allow people to use malware prevention software for free. A representative from the ministry’s Department of Information Security said the campaign is for businesses and home network systems and equipment. The group accounts for most of the IP addresses. The campaign would also contribute to improving the country’s reliability in e-transactions, thus promoting socio-economic development and contribute to ensuring national defence and security.

The department would work with VNPT, Viettel, CMC, FPT, BKAV, and Kaspersky to implement the campaign. The project would assess ten major botnets that need to be treated with priority, build, and deploy tools on a large scale, whereby users get free downloads to inspect and remove malicious code from their computers.

After the campaign, the department will evaluate results and plan future campaigns accordingly. The campaign has been implemented in all provinces and cities from the local to the central level, through specialised IT units of ministries, branches and localities, state groups and corporations, and commercial banks and financial institutions.

Additionally, it has received support from organisations, corporations, and major security firms such as Kaspersky, Group-IB, FireEye, F-Secure, and ESET. The campaign has been implemented gradually. The ministry hopes it will achieve positive results, contributing to clean malware from Vietnam’s cyberspace. This will help ensure safety for transactions of agencies and enterprises, as the country is accelerating digital transformation towards the development of digital government, digital economy, and digital society.

In August this year, the Department of Information Security recorded 517 cyberattacks on information systems (199 phishing cases, 160 deface attacks and 158 malware attacks), falling 0.77% over the previous month. The number of Vietnamese IP addresses in botnet networks is over 2 million, a decrease of 0.03% compared to July. The number of recorded cyberattacks, warnings, and the number of botnet IP addresses showed a slight decrease in the last three months.

The decrease was due to the department continuing to strengthen the recording, warnings, and instructions on information security. However, cyber attackers have still taken advantage of concerns about the pandemic to increase the spread of malicious code. The number of IP botnets compared to the same period last year was still at a high level. To ensure network security, the department will strengthen the monitoring and active scanning of the country’s cyberspace.

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) awarded a $400,000 grant to Griffith University researchers to develop a network of energy-efficient smart sensors that will help Vietnam combat flooding.

The project aims to create a web of micro-sensors spread throughout Ho Chi Minh (HCM) City to monitor flood levels in real-time. Associate Professor Dzung Dao, Head of Mechanical Engineering and Industrial Design, is leading the project along with Saigon Hi-Tech Park Labs and the University of Southern Queensland.

Dao noted that HCM City, which is the largest city in Vietnam, faces weekly deluges of floodwater that severely impacts more than 60% of its citizens and causes severe economic loss every year. The first step to overcoming the problem is developing a sensory system throughout the city that monitors water levels to find out exactly where and when it is flooding.

Several flood detection systems have been tried in the past, but as these used cameras and conventional sensors and communication systems they were costly and had power consumption issues, he noted.

As per news reports, the energy-efficient wireless sensor network will use tiny nano-sensors, that can be mass-produced for a fraction of the cost and with significantly lower power consumption. Hundreds of these sensors deployed on land and in rivers will wirelessly feed flood information back to a hub on the internet creating a smart long-range sensor network.

The team discovered that as the sensors get smaller, they start to take on interesting properties. They get increasingly sensitive to changes in the environment and get stronger, Dao explained. The hot and humid weather, heavy rain, and high outflow from rivers, urbanised areas, and obsoleted sewage systems also leads to poor performance and lifespan for flood detection sensors. However, the new, tiny silicon carbide sensors are robust enough to withstand a long deployment in these harsh environments.

The internet-linked sensor network will act as an early flood detection and warning system. It will assist emergency services and warn citizens in the city via a mobile phone application, helping people avoid flooded areas and mitigating human and economic losses in HCM City.

The sensor network is also the essential first step to developing an automated response system for the prevention of local flooding in the city using stormwater drainage infrastructure to capture, divert, or pump water to less flooded areas. Once the team has a proof-of-concept of the smart monitoring network in HCM City, it envisions similar systems being installed in further regions of Vietnam and other countries also affected by economically crippling flooding.

Vietnam has been pushing for more energy-conscious solutions and recently launched the online EVNSOLAR platform for roof-top solar power.

As OpenGov Asia reported, EVNSOLAR provides comprehensive solutions for potential investors, including both households and enterprises, in developing rooftop solar power. Customers will have easier access to contractors who can offer reasonable prices, as well as banks and financial organisations that provide credit support solutions.

The contractors joining the platform must commit to providing products and services that meet the quality of German evaluation standards. Soon, the platform will be developed for mobile applications and its tools and technologies will be further improved to promote connection and interaction among users.

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