Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Movement of visitors from high-risk areas to be tracked with mandatory sim and app

Mar 17. 2020
Thakorn Tanthasit
Thakorn Tanthasit
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By THE NATION

The National Broadcasting and Telecommunication Commission (NBTC) will provide a free sim card worth Bt49 to every Thai and foreigner who had travelled from countries announced as having high risk of Covid-19 infection, such as China, Macau, Hong Kong, South Korea, Italy and Iran.

“The sim card will be used together with the AOT Airports application, which will help track the position of users for 14 days to verify that they remain in quarantine,” NBTC secretary-general Thakorn Tanthasit said.

“We have coordinated with Immigration Bureau to ask all arrivals from high-risk countries to download this app on their phone. Those who refuse to comply will be denied access to the Kingdom, according to Section 12 (7) of Immigration Act.”

The AOT Airports application has had more than 7,000 downloads since it went live on March 12.

“As for those who had entered Thailand before March 12 and have not downloaded the app yet, the Department of Disease Control will submit their names to the NBTC so that we can notify them to download the app as soon as possible,” said Thakorn. “The app will track the position of the phone for 14 days and will alert the authority if it leaves designated quarantine areas. After 14 days have passed, it will stop tracking and the system will delete the data immediately.”

Meanwhile, Dr Khajornsak Kaewjarat, Department of Disease Control deputy director-general, said that the application will be a great help in tracking and monitoring those who have come from high-risk infection areas.

“Currently we are monitoring about 1,300 Thais who have returned from South Korea and tested negative for Covid-19,” he said. “They still have to remain in self-quarantine at home until the incubation period of 14 days have passed, and this app can tell us exactly where they are at all times.”

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