How to determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets in Vietnam?

How to determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets in Vietnam?
Dương Châu Thanh

How to determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets in Vietnam?

How to determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets in Vietnam?

How to determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets in Vietnam? (Internet image) 

How to determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets in Vietnam?

The content mentioned in Official Dispatch 4114/BCA-ANCTNB of 2022 guides the implementation of the provisions of the Law on Protection of State Secrets issued by the Ministry of Public Security.

1. Determine state secrets and the level of confidentiality of state secrets

1.1. Regarding authority: Clause 2, Article 10 of the Law on Protection of State Secrets stipulate that heads of agencies and organizations are responsible for determining state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets.

However, in the political system, the deputy of the head of an agency or organization is the direct assistant to the head, assigned by the head to be in charge of the work of the agency, organization, or unit under the authority of the head (expressed in working regulations or annual work assignment documents of agencies, organizations, units, or regulations and internal rules on protecting state secrets); at the same time, the chief must still be responsible for the work assigned to the deputy.

Therefore, the authorized deputy of the head of an agency or organization is also responsible for determining state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets for information in the assigned field of responsibility.

1.2. In case of signing under orders or authorization on behalf of: In cases of signing under orders, under authorization, or on behalf of the agency or organization, there must be a written proposal to the head of the agency or organization to decide on state secrets and the level of confidentiality of state secrets.

1.3. Application of the list of state secrets: according to the provisions of Clause 1, Article 10 of the Law on Protection of State Secrets, the determination of state secrets and the level of confidentiality of state secrets must be based on the list of state secrets. When assigned to draft documents, agencies and organizations must rely on the 35 lists of state secrets in industries and fields that have been issued by the Prime Minister to determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets.

1.4. Draft documents containing state secrets: when the level of confidentiality has not been decided and signed by a competent person, do not affix a seal indicating the level of confidentiality on the draft document. When sending a draft, there must be a written request that the recipient be responsible for protecting the draft content, ensuring that state secrets are not exposed or lost.

1.5. Regarding the content "Permitted or not allowed to copy or photograph documents and objects containing state secrets" specified in Clause 2, Article 10 of the Law on Protection of State Secrets:

- Authority: Pursuant to Article 2 of Decree 26/2020/ND-CP, agencies and organizations that issue or release documents or create objects containing state secrets decide whether or not they are allowed to copy or photograph documents or objects containing state secrets.

- Form of expression: Pursuant to Clause 1, Article 2 of Decree 26/2020/ND-CP, the content "permitted or not allowed to copy or photograph documents or objects containing state secrets" must be shown in the "receiving place" section of the document.

- The application of the regulation "not allowed to copy or photocopy documents or objects containing state secrets" aims to limit arbitrary copying and photocopying leading to disclosure or loss of state secrets. The content "copying or photographing documents or objects containing state secrets is not allowed" is applied in cases of highly classified state secrets (such as Top Secret) to minimize access, and it's okay; you can still capture state secret content.

- The application of the regulation "Permitted to copy and photograph documents and objects containing state secrets": is applied in cases where state secrets have a wide scope of dissemination.

1.6. Regarding stamping "NUMBER COPY" on state secret documents: All state secret documents signed by authorized persons (including copies kept at the archives and copies kept at the drafting unit) must be stamped "VERSION NUMBER" in order from 01 to the last version to manage the number of signed and issued confidential documents.

1.7. Handling and overcoming cases where agencies and organizations incorrectly determine state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets: Implement penalties for administrative violations according to the provisions of Decree 144/2021/ND-CP dated December 31, 2021 of the Government regulating penalties for administrative violations in the fields of security, order, and social safety; prevention of social evils; fire protection and prevention; rescue and salvage; and preventing and combating domestic violence. At the same time, request agencies and organizations that incorrectly identify state secrets and the confidentiality of state secrets to issue a document to correct or revoke released state secrets.

2. Issue a list of state secrets

According to the provisions of Clause 1, Article 9 of the Law on Protection of State Secrets, the Prime Minister is the only entity with authority to promulgate the list of state secrets; Agencies and organizations (including party organizations) can only directly apply the 35 lists of state secrets promulgated by the Prime Minister and are not allowed to issue lists of state secrets themselves.

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