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Letter to the editor – Unacceptable Data requests

Dear Editor,

Further to the revelation at the end of March that confidential data relating to foreigners living in Southern Thailand had become common knowledge as a result of a monumental security lapse by the Thai Government  I was surprised to learn that redacted copies of bank books are not acceptable by Samui Immigration who instead insist upon having account numbers too before processing extensions based on retirement, marriage etc. With no known complaints procedure or appeals process anyone presenting themselves of late expecting to be served has little choice but to comply.

I further note online reports suggesting offices elsewhere are using a locally produced template (in English language only and with no TM no!) to collate data that is already held by the relevant department or is otherwise not the concern of domestic authorities, namely:

  1. Vehicle registration details are the responsibility of and maintained by the Thai DVLA,
  1. Lists of Family/friends living in our homeland or living in 3rd countries bear no relevance whatsoever to our status in Thailand. CRC’s (Criminal Record Checks) from our countries of origin were in most cases a pre-requisite for being allowed to remain in the Kingdom on a long term basis from the onset and attested to good character at the time we applied.

The short-term answer for anyone undertaking immigration formalities in the next few weeks is to have two copies of whatever applicants consider sensitive and to present the redacted version first and hope it isn’t noticed. The longer-term answer is to send a short, factual complaint to your Embassy in the hope that the situation can be clarified and standardized throughout the Kingdom, as would be normal practice elsewhere.

 

Sincerely,

 

A Partridge.

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