Thai military recruits new officers to join its brand new “Cyber warfare” unit

The Thai military is recruiting a number of new personnel for a Cyber Warfare unit to take care of cyber security matters.  

Col Chatchai Chaikaseam, the Director of the Cyber Warfare unit of the Thai military, revealed on Sunday at Thailand’s Meet the Hacker 2015 in Bangkok that the military is recruiting seven officers to join the unit.

The Cyber Warfare unit is under the Directorate of Joint Operations, under the Royal Thai Armed Forces.

Applications will open on 15 February on the Directorate of Joint Operations website.

The positions to be recruited are:

Penetration testing officers: 3 positions

Digital forensic officers: 1 position

Cyber security auditing officers: 1 position

Penetration testing non-commissioned officer: 1 position

Digital forensic non-commissioned officer: 1 position

Arthit Suriyawongkul, coordinator of the Thai Netizen Network (TNN), an Internet freedom advocacy group, told Prachatai that he heard about the plan to set up such a unit a few years ago. The Thai army is following the US model of the Cyber Command Office under the US Strategic Command. However, unlike the US, he said he could not think of any cyber warfare that Thailand will have to fight in.

Earlier last month, the junta’s cabinet approved controversial Digital Economy Bills, which, despite the junta’s claims that the bills are primarily for developing Thailand’s digital economy, have been criticised by many civil society groups as ‘national security’ bills in disguise.

Under the Cyber Security Bill, one of the ten Digital Economy Bills, a Cyber Security Committee will be established to oversee threats to national security, the economy, military, and stability. According to Article 35 of the bill, the Committee will be able to access all personal information from all kinds of communication devices.

Since the 2014 coup d’état, the junta has initiated a series of restrictions on media and the internet under the tight control of martial law. Most measures target political dissidents and people allegedly defaming the Thai monarchy, which is prohibited under Article 112 of the Criminal Code, known as the lèse majesté law.

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