Foreign Ministry warns against Thai consulate fraudsters

Photo courtesy of Zee Business

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) has issued a red alert, cautioning citizens worldwide against a surge in scam attempts by fraudsters posing as Thai consulate officials.

The warning stems from a barrage of reports concerning deceitful social media accounts and phone numbers purportedly linked to Thai consulates, spreading in Australia and Japan.

According to Ministry spokesperson Kanchana Patarachoke, Australian victims have fallen prey to scammers employing outdated telephone numbers once affiliated with the Royal Thai Honorary Consulate in Melbourne. Exploiting this outdated information, these impostors cunningly extract personal information, coerce victims into connecting via Line accounts, and lure them into making online payments.

“The Sydney Royal Thai Consulate-General has already sounded the alarm by reporting such incidents to Scamwatch.”

Japan is also experiencing a similar surge in scam cases. Kanchana disclosed that scammers in Japan might employ elusive phone numbers tagged as unknown, posing as embassy officials in Tokyo, manipulating victims into transferring money directly into the hands of these deceivers.

“The victims comprise not only Thais residing in Japan but also Japanese individuals proficient in the Thai language.”

In an urgent plea, the Royal Thai Embassy in Tokyo has implored those hoodwinked into transferring money to take immediate action, reported Bangkok Post.

Victims are urged to file complaints promptly with the Japanese police and can seek further assistance by contacting the Thai embassy in Tokyo at 090 4435 7812.

MFA spokesperson Kanchana extended her caution to the people of Thailand, alerting them to a malevolent Facebook page, LINE account, and mobile application impersonating the Thailand Foreign Ministry Consular Department.

“People should exercise utmost caution when solicited for personal information, contact details, or biometric data, as these can be ruthlessly exploited by scammers.”

In related news, Phuket’s Provincial Police called for vigilance against foreign beggars, following the arrest of a Chinese man who was allegedly soliciting donations under false pretences. The man, identified only as Yang by law enforcement, claimed that the funds collected would go towards aiding a disabled child.

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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