Thailand threatens to ‘close Facebook’ over alleged scams



Thailand’s government plans to ask a court to close Meta’s Facebook in Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy if it fails to take action over scams that have affected more than 200,000 people, the country’s digital minister said Monday.

Talking to the international media agency Reuters, Chaiwut Thanakamanusorn said: “We are asking the court to close Facebook, not allowing it to provide services in Thailand if they let these fake pages scam people.”

The Ministry of Digital Economy and Society claimed that despite numerous requests for Facebook to remove adverts that it had classified as scams, no action was taken. As a result, the ministry stated it would now seek court intervention.

An email asking for feedback received no immediate response from Meta.

According to ministry spokesperson Wetang Phuangsup, officials are presently compiling evidence of misconduct by Facebook that will be presented to the court.

He added: “If there is a lot of wrongdoing, the court could close down pages and accounts. Or the court could close the entire platform.”

Scams on Facebook included luring users to invest in fake companies, faking government bodies like the Securities and Exchange Commission and trading in digital currencies, the ministry said.

“They can’t do business like this,” Chaiwut said.


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