AIS warns: Don't respond to online surveys or forward them Risk of losing personal data and paying international iSMS charges

17 May 2021: Saichon Submakudom, Head of Public Relations at Advanced Info Service plc (AIS) noted, “The Covid-19 situation has meant more people working from home (WFH) or learning from home (LFH), or even trading online, leading to Thai people communicating more and more on online platforms. This makes them prey for scammers stealing personal data, and deceiving users on an ever greater scale.

“Attacks include phishing, which is using fake websites to obtain personal data. They take advantage of the current social situation, such as registering for vaccination. They trick users into revealing One Time Passwords (OTP), and then use them for financial transactions. Pop-up ads pretend to scan for viruses while encouraging clicks, and fake news deceives people into sharing it further.”

Saichon added, “We have now discovered another scam inviting users to complete an online survey and share it to their network in exchange for prizes. When customers visit the URL in the link which looks like an online survey, the customer’s telephone number is used to send iSMS overseas automatically, generating unseen charges which are higher than usual. There is also a risk that the personal data obtained will be used incorrectly.

“After AIS investigated these irregularities, the company blocked suspicious URLs or links, to protect AIS customers who were then unable to click on that URL or link. However, the scammers will create similar URLs or links in the future. From our concern for customers, we have issued this warning for customers to be careful and not to click on unfamiliar URLs or links. This includes text which seems dubious inviting to join an activity, or where the user is asked supply data for a prize. Please check to be confident that the URL or link is genuine, before sharing it with people you know. This is to prevent the risk of allowing scammers to access your personal data, or create unusual charges which are potentially damaging.”