Vietnam passes cybersecurity law despite concerns

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HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Vietnamese legislators have passed a contentious cybersecurity law, which critics say will hurt the economy and further restrict freedom of expression.

The Communist Party-dominated assembly passed the law by a majority on Tuesday. The law requires service providers such as Google and Facebook to store user data in Vietnam, open offices in the country and remove offending contents within 24 hours at the request of authorities.

Addressing the assembly before the vote, the chairman of the Committee on Defense and Security says the law is necessary to defend the interests of the people and national security.

The U.S. has called on Vietnam to delay the passage of legislation.

The Vietnam Digital Communications Association says the law may reduce GDP by 1.7 percent and wipe out foreign investment by 3.1 percent.

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