Connect with us


NBTC targets huge Cookie Run phone debt

Legacy Phuket Gazette





– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

NBTC targets huge Cookie Run phone debt
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) is considering enforcing monthly debt limits for bills incurred by playing online games.

No matter how cute and innocent Cookie Run characters may look, it was said that players risk losing too much money if they don’t understand that special items in the game are sometimes sold for real money.

“It may be necessary to impose credit limits for the purchase of applications, games, items and stickers – perhaps at Bt1,000 per billing cycle,” NBTC member Prawit Leesathapornwongsa said yesterday.

He was speaking after he summoned the representatives of five mobile-phone service operators to a meeting in the wake of reports that a 12-year-old boy incurred a phone bill of more than Bt200,000 in less than a month via the Cookie Run.

The bill was from Advanced Wireless Network, a subsidiary of Advanced Info Service (AIS), he said.

AWN is the first operator in Thailand to allow mobile-phone users to pay for Google Play Store services via direct carrier billing (DCB). With this method, mobile-phone users do not need to associate their account with a credit-card number. They can pay for the services via their phone-service payment, which could be either pre-paid or post-paid from April 30 to May 30.

AIS executive Pratana Leelapanang said the company had decided to launch DCB services to provide convenience to users of Android phones.

“And when we noticed that some customers had incurred unusually high expenses last month, we didn’t stay idle. We immediately shut down the DCB service for all post-paid users,” he said.

Pratana said AIS had also offered to waive fees for customers who unintentionally bought services from the Google Play Store via DCB.

He said AIS would develop its alert system further to prevent customers from incurring unwanted expenses.

“We’re also thinking about a credit limit and educating the public more about online services.”

Prawit said the NBTC would invite Google Thailand to a discussion on Thursday to see how the firm, as a platform provider, could help prevent the aforementioned problems.

However, the DCB services provided by AWN are done via a contract between Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel), the major shareholder of AIS, and Google Singapore.

Cookie Run is an irresistible game among many Thais.

Two months ago, a Thai man fell from a four-storey building after becoming overly focused on playing the game. Fortunately, he was not seriously hurt.

In the latest case of youngsters unwittingly running up bills while playing games on mobile phones, AIS has agreed to waive some Bt600,000 racked up by an 18-year-old boy in Mae Sot, Tak province.

The boy did not realise he was spending real money when he bought items while playing the popular Cookie Run game.

Atchara Jaikrua, who spent many sleepless nights after receiving a phone bill worth Bt596,398 thanks to her son’s favourite pastime, said she was relieved to hear that the phone service operator had decided to waive the bill on grounds that she did not know it.

Atchara, who works at a drinks shop, paid her actual bill worth Bt614.46 and decided to cancel the number. She also called on other parents to beware about allowing their kids to use post-paid phones.

Similarly, a resident in Phetchaburi’s Ban Lad district was sent a bill of Bt163,405 after her eight-year-old son reportedly bought items to advance in the Cookie Run game through her phone. Somthawil Khiewsa-art said the phone service operator had told her to pay the first instalment of Bt48,000 soon, adding she did not know what to do. She went on to say that her son had played the game for months without any problems and then started buying items, not knowing that they cost money.

Another parent in Udon Thani’s Muang district claimed his child had also unwittingly racked up a bill of Bt70,495 on his phone. Telewiz Udon Thani executive Sawat Theerattananukulchai said he had discussed this case with AIS and the telecom operator had agreed to check if the bill stemmed from the user’s ignorance. And if so, AIS would cover the expense.

— Phuket Gazette Editors


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Video4 hours ago

The “Dislike: button, Serving alcohol, Thai longtail boats | Thaiger Bites | Ep.75

Coronavirus (Covid-19)5 hours ago

LATEST NEWS: First Omicron case detected in Thailand

Politics7 hours ago

Cambodian PM plans a visit to Myanmar to smooth divisions in ASEAN

Transport7 hours ago

A bird strike may have caused Royal Thai Air Force F-5 fighter jet’s recent crashing

Thailand7 hours ago

Thailand Top Stories | Alcohol situation in Pattaya, Thailand Omicron update | Dec 6

Coronavirus (Covid-19)8 hours ago

First Omicron strain reported in Thailand, Test & Go traveller tests positive

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)8 hours ago

Covid UPDATE: Still no Omicron, today’s infections drop to 4,000

Crime8 hours ago

Phuket police arrest 32 after more than 3,500 venue raids since November

Video9 hours ago

Dealign with omicron, Opening the southern border, pen15 park | Good Morning Thailand | Ep.146

Politics9 hours ago

US Republican Party senator Bob Dole passes away at 98

Coronavirus Vaccines9 hours ago

Thailand’s Health Ministry misses Covid-19 vaccination target

Tourism9 hours ago

Germany removes Thailand from its list of high-risk countries

Indonesia9 hours ago

Death toll rises to 14 in volcanic eruption in Indonesia

North East10 hours ago

Police deny detaining or threatening woman who told PM to “retire quickly”

Coronavirus (Covid-19)11 hours ago

CCSA meets today to decide on southern border re-opening

Thailand3 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism10 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism10 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11