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Viet Nam's top 10 ICT events of 2014

Update: December, 31/2014 - 08:43

The Information Technology Journalist's Club announced the top ten domestic information and communication technology (ICT) stories of 2014 at a ceremony in Ha Noi on Monday.

The Vietnamese-made mobile game Flappy Bird created a global fever. Released in late January for Android phones, iPhones and iPads, and created by Nguyen Ha Dong, a young independent game developer, Flappy Bird became a worldwide phenomenon. Though Dong later took the game down, saying it failed to bring excitement to players as he had expected, Google listed Flappy Bird as one of the top keywords searched in 2014. US entertainment website The Richest also named Dong one of the top 10 internet millionaires in the world.
Viet Nam Communications Joint Stock Corporation (VC Corp.)'s system was hacked, causing losses of up to VND30 billion (US$1.41 million). On October 13, many online newspapers and websites managed and operated by VC Corp. stopped working as a result of the hack.
MobiFone separated from Viet Nam Posts and Telecommunications (VNPT), and became a joint stock company. On June 10, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung signed Decision No. 888/QD-TTg, approving a plan to restructure VNPT in 2014 and 2015. Control of Mobifone was transferred to the Ministry of Information and Communications. The change will help improve the corporation's efficiency. The Prime Minister on November 18 approved MIC's approval to transform MobiFone into a corporation. At the beginning of December, Minister of Information and Communications Nguyen Bac Son signed a Decision No 1798/QD-BTTTT to establish MobiFone Telecommunications Corporation.
Samsung became the largest foreign investor in Viet Nam. In November, the northern province of Thai Nguyen officially granted an investment certificate for Samsung Electronics Viet Nam to build a $3-billion telephone-manufacturing and assembling plant. The project lifted Samsung's total investment in Viet Nam to $11.2 billion.
The Politburo issued Resolution No.36-NQ-TW, replacing Directive No.58-CT/TW on IT application. The resolution showed that ICT is considered an effective tool for spurring the development of a knowledge-based economy, and improving national competitiveness.
The Ministry of Information and Communications shut down the website Haivl.com in October. It fined the website's managing company, APPVL Viet Nam, VND205 million ($9,700) for several violations: operating without a licence, providing unlicensed online games and distorting history.
Police and municipal inspectors found in June that Viet Hong Company was selling spy mobile software to thousands of customers: the Ptracker app for individuals and PtrackerERP for businesses. It installed the apps on 14,000 mobile subscribers' phones. The apps were used to collect personal information.
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung allowed State agencies to outsource IT services. At the first plenary meeting of the National Committee on IT Application in June, PM Dung gave the go-ahead to State-run agencies looking to outsource IT services. It helped State agencies cut expenses, while creating healthy competition in the sector.

The Asia-America Gateway (AAG) undersea cable broke several times. Disruptions in the AAG cable line seriously affected Viet Nam's international internet traffic. The line stopped working for a week in March for maintenance, and then in July a section was damaged off the coast of Vung Tau. The cable broke again in September. The interruptions reduced internet traffic in Viet Nam by between 40 and 70 per cent. — VNA/VNS

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