Cambodia’s Cyber-Slavery Trafficking Denials Reflect Official Complicity, Experts Say

Despite growing evidence that Cambodia has become a source of industrial-scale cyber-scams, the authorities continue to downplay the extent of the problem.

Cambodia’s continued attempts to minimize the extent of cyber-slavery on its territory reflect official complicity, as well as the need to embark on a learning curve that many other countries have yet to master, experts say.

A huge volume of media reports concur that trafficking victims are recruited to work in cyber-slavery from China, and an ever-growing pool of other countries globally, with the promise of well-paid, legitimate employment in Southeast Asia. The victims are often young, with English speakers being the most valuable.

The victims often don’t know where they are really going. Some have reported that they thought they were going to work in Thailand. When they arrive, they find themselves transferred to closed compounds in countries, including Cambodia, Myanmar, and Laos. Their real task is to trick people who are trying to start a new relationship online into parting with their money.

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