Thailand’s Department of Employment (DoE), the number of job seekers misled by bogus overseas job brokers has increased as more people seek jobs. The substantial increase coincides with increased demand for Thai workers in worldwide labour markets in the post-Covid-19 pandemic period, according to Phairoj Chotikasatien, director-general of the DoE.
According to Mr Phairoj, between October of last year and early this month, at least 471 persons were duped out of a total of 32.75 million baht they paid to bogus overseas job recruitment organisations for non-existent placement services.
According to him, 142 bogus job recruiters were involved in these international job scams.
In the period from October 2021 to early July 2022, 217 victims were misled, resulting in damages totaling 16.6 million baht.
South Korea, Australia, Japan, Canada, and Sweden topped the list of countries popular with job seekers who are frequently duped by phoney internet job ads, he noted.
According to him, the majority of the victims were foreign workers from Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, Nakhon Phanom, Chaiyaphum, and Pathum Thani.
Despite DoE efforts to educate job seekers about legal and safe methods for applying for abroad jobs through licenced recruiting agencies, the number of overseas job scams has increased. At the same time, he said, the government has tightened down on illegal job brokers.
Anyone who recruits people to work abroad without a legitimate permit given by the DoE faces a three to ten-year prison sentence, a fine of 60,000 to 200,000 baht, or both, he said.
Illegal job postings on the internet and social media are punishable by up to three years in prison, a 60,000 baht fine, or both, he said.