Chulalongkorn University Faculty of Arts graduates recently received an email from the Faculty’s academic division asking permission to provide their personal information to the Royal Secretary so that they can be invited to take the employment exam.
An email received by a graduate, asking for permission to be sent to the Royal Secretary their personal information.
A copy of the email has been circulating on social media since 14 September. In summary, it states that the Royal Secretary, under the Royal Office, has requested contact data and personal information for the Faculty’s top 20 graduates from each department so that they can be invited to test for possible employment with the Royal Secretary.
In keeping with the recently adopted Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA), CU asked students for permission to release the data.
Attached to the permission request was a form for graduates to provide address and contact data. Those interested were told to respond by 18 September 2022.
Prachatai confirmed with a graduate that the email was actually sent.
Prachatai also contacted the faculty’s registrar to discuss the incident. An office spokesperson explained that a request to assist with the exam invitation was received and, in keeping with the new data protection act, an email was sent to students to request their permission before sending their personal information on to the Royal Secretary.
The spokesperson was unaware if similar requests had been made in the past but noted that the University regularly receives requests from private companies to help fill job vacancies.
Citing an anonymous source at CU, BBC Thai reports that the University normally provided information to facilitate new graduates’ job recruitment. However, in keeping with the new PDPA, it is now necessary to ask students’ permission before giving out their personal information.
BBC Thai also cited an article by Anon Sakvoravich, at the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA), a local higher education institution, stating the Royal Secretary is tasked with screening incoming documents before passing them on to the King for consideration. It also coordinates with officials in the government and private sectors on royal affairs.
According to the 2017 Royal Service Administration Act, the Royal Secretary is one of the offices under the Royal Office. The Act transformed 5 government agencies into royal agencies under a variety of regulations. Previously, the Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary was an independent government agency equivalent to a department, under the command of the Prime Minister.