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Thailand to require fingerprints, face scans for SIM cards

Staff Writer |
Face-scans or fingerprints will be needed to buy SIM cards in Thailand from next month as the kingdom tries to crack down on electronic fraud and encourage mobile banking.

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The new biometric system which follows similar requirements in Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan will begin on December 15, according to the telecoms regulator.

"We're entering the digital age, our money now is linked to mobile services. By doing this, trust in mobile banking or payment systems will be improved," said Takorn Tantasith, secretary-general of the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC).

"Some people used fake ID to register their SIM cards, which created a problem," he added, assuring users their privacy would be protected.

The face and fingerprint scans will be matched to government data linked to Thai national ID cards.

Tourists will also be required to have face-scans checked against their passport photos.

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