Instead of being paid to watch YouTube, teen girl scammed for over 300K baht

Police warned online lurkers to be vigilant about scams again today after a 16-year-old Thai girl was conned via Instagram into giving over THB300,000 to scammers.

The unidentified teen’s uncle, identified only as Atichai, said it all began a year ago when his granddaughter found a job listing on Instagram that promised money in exchange for watching YouTube videos. The 39-year-old Korat man said the young girl was invited to a Line chat where the admin laid out an increasingly complicated scheme.

First, she was asked to transfer THB100 to apply. After that, the girl was given a list of music videos to watch, starting with five songs for which she would receive THB200. She was told she would have to pay THB100 in “insurance,” a number which later increased to THB1,000 as she continued watching videos.

The girl decided to watch 20 songs and transferred THB400 for the insurance fee. She was later told they couldn’t pay her what was promised due an error in the system.

To make up for the error, the admin offered her another job in merchandise – but first she’d have to pay a THB500 application fee.

She forked over the THB500 but then, feeling doubtful, opted to cancel the application.

Fast forward to a year later, when the scammers last month began sending the girl threatening messages if she did not pay up to close her accounts.

She was tricked into transferring THB1,500 to “terminate” her accounts and another THB1,500 for documents until she had no money left.

She then borrowed her grandmother’s phone, and even borrowed money from her aunt, and was tricked into transferring several batches of money totaling THB302,500, which was her grandfather’s pension money and her own savings for school tuition.

Due to losing her grandparents’ money, the girl is reportedly in a constant state of stress, taking sleeping pills and antidepressants every day. Her grandparents now have to monitor her at night for fear that she will harm herself.

Nakhon Ratchasima police said today there was no progress in the case and warned parents to monitor their children’s online activity.

In recent years, many people have fallen victim to elaborate online scams. Usually, it is difficult to track down or hold the perpetrators accountable.

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