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Thai Immigration Asks Foreigners for Bank Accounts, Social Media, Hangouts
Part of a three-page Immigration Bureau form seeking personal information from foreign nationals residing in the kingdom.
By Todd Ruiz and Sasiwan Mokkhasen
BANGKOK â€” Foreign nationals residing in Thailand are being asked to disclose personal information to the government, including their bank details and where they hang out online and offline.
Internal documents obtained earlier this month by Khaosod English showed the Immigration Bureau would ask foreigners for personal details about places they frequent in the virtual and real worlds, additional information to be filed before they can extend their visas or complete the routine 90-day reports required to reside legally in the kingdom.
In recent days, a number of people have reported on Twitter and online forums frequented by expats that they have received the new forms at the Immigration Division 1 office and One-Stop Service Center at Chamchuri Square. Both are in Bangkok.
Apart from the basic information, the form requires details about what social media they use, details of vehicles they use including license plate numbers, and â€śplaces or premises visited often by the foreigner â€¦ such as club, restaurant, shop, hospital and other places.â€ť The form also asks for their bank account numbers.
Chatchawan Wachirapaneekhun, deputy commissioner of the Immigration Bureauâ€™s crime suppression unit, said providing the information was not mandatory.
â€śWe wonâ€™t force them to fill it out,â€ť he said. â€śWe wonâ€™t bother with their social media â€“ if they aren't doing anything wrong.â€ť
Maj. Gen. Chatchawan, who wrote the new form, said he personally urged immigration offices nationwide to collect the information on March 22. It is purportedly for recording information of all foreigners entering and living in the kingdom. It indicates the information will be used to record of residence in the country according to articles 37 and 38 of the 1979 Immigration Act.
Chatchawan said in the past, immigration lacked sufficient information about foreign nationals living in Thailand when problems arose. He said the new information was being sought to help track down foreigners when problems arose.
He said that the information would soon be integrated under the same linked information system. Some of the information such as bank account details, he said were already required for extended stays.
â€śWe are considering national security,â€ť he said. â€śConsidering entering the ASEAN community and the increasing terrorism problem, some people escape after committing a crime, and we cannot track them down.â€ť
Da auch unter dieser "guten" MilitĂ¤rdiktatur die "Polizei" weder willens noch in der Lage ist ordentliche Polizeiarbeit
zu leisten und die in ihr beinhaltete "Immigration" von den Zahlungen der von ihr ins Land geschleusten
Kriminellen und Perversen lebt hat man sich nun eine neue Schikane ausgedacht um eventuell seine
NatĂĽrlich wird niemand der noch halbwegs bei Sinnen ist diesen Quatsch beantworten, aber Leute die
noch bei Sinnen sind will man in Thailand sowieso nicht weil man an denen nix verdienen kann.