Thai mobile banking sim names & accounts must match or else

Image from IDFC First Bank

Starting tomorrow, individuals using mobile banking in Thailand must ensure that the name registered on their mobile SIM card matches the name on their bank account. Failure to comply will result in the suspension of their mobile banking services.

Thailand’s Ministry of Digital Economy and Society announced a new measure aimed at curbing fraudulent bank accounts and SIM cards, commonly referred to as mule accounts and ghost SIMs.

The government set today as the deadline for users to ensure that their mobile banking account names match their registered SIM card names.

If discrepancies are found, users will be notified via their mobile banking app to visit a service centre and update their information. Accounts with mismatched information will have their services suspended until the issue is resolved.

Digital Economy and Society Minister, Chaiwut Thanakamanusorn explained that in the past, bank accounts could be linked to mobile numbers or SIM cards that did not match the account holder’s name.

However, the rise in fraudulent activities involving mule accounts and ghost SIMs has led the government to implement stricter measures.

Unmatched names

Currently, Thailand has 106 million mobile banking accounts, with approximately 30 million of these accounts having names that do not match the registered SIM card names.

The new regulation aims to shut down or suspend around 100,000 mule accounts each month, with an estimated one million mule accounts currently in the system.

Chaiwut also mentioned plans to collaborate with the Ministry of Commerce to tackle corporate mule accounts, as criminals are now using both individual and corporate accounts for fraudulent activities.

The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) advises the public to verify that their mobile banking number matches their bank account name. This measure is part of a broader effort to combat ghost SIMs and ensure secure online money transfers.

Starting tomorrow, relevant agencies will begin screening accounts. If a SIM card holder’s name does not match the bank account holder’s name, they will be notified to either update their SIM card information or register a new number under their name.

Exceptions will be made for cases where mobile banking is set up for minors or elder parents.

Update information

Failure to update the information within the specified timeframe will result in the suspension of services, though the bank account itself will remain functional.

For new mobile banking accounts, banks will now be required to verify that the account holder’s name matches the mobile number owner’s name.

The NBTC has provided a simple method for users to check if their details are accurate. By dialling 179 followed by their ID card number and pressing call, users can quickly verify whether their mobile banking name matches their SIM card registration.

This initiative aims to eliminate ghost SIMs that are often used by criminals, leveraging the NBTC’s authority without the need for lengthy legal procedures.

Ensuring that bank account holders and mobile banking number owners are the same person will make it significantly harder for criminals to operate, thereby reducing the prevalence of mule accounts and ghost SIMs, reported Khaosod.

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Nattapong Westwood

Nattapong Westwood is a Bangkok-born writer who is half Thai and half Aussie. He studied in an international school in Bangkok and then pursued journalism studies in Melbourne. Nattapong began his career as a freelance writer before joining Thaiger. His passion for news writing fuels his dedication to the craft, as he consistently strives to deliver engaging content to his audience.

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