Isoc should stay, expand to cover cyber security: poll

Isoc should stay, expand to cover cyber security: poll

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin holds a press conference with the presence of the military top brass after chairing a policy meeting at the Internal Security Operations Command on Oct 31. (Photo: Nutthawat Wicheanbut)
Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin holds a press conference with the presence of the military top brass after chairing a policy meeting at the Internal Security Operations Command on Oct 31. (Photo: Nutthawat Wicheanbut)

The Internal Security Operations Command (Isoc) should not only continue to exist but also expand its role to oversee cyber security, according to an opinion survey by Super Poll, a research office.

The poll was conducted on Nov 1-4 on 1,210 people aged 18 up of various occupations throughout the country to compile their opinion on the role of Isoc.

The following are a summary of results of the survey:

• 62.9% of the respondents were of the opinion that the agency should expand its role to oversee cyber security and threats to national security on social media.

• 51.5% said Isoc should continue to exist. However, its management should be improved in order to respond more clearly to the wishes of the people in different areas.

• 51.4% said Isoc has played crucial roles in coping with natural disasters such as wildfires, flooding and others.

• 45.7% said Isoc is where authorities from several government agencies have worked together for the country's security and solidary without division.

• 42.9% said Isoc has maintained national security in many areas including separatism, drugs and terrorism as well as protecting national interests.

Assistant Professor Noppadol Kannika, founder of Super Poll, concluded that the majority of the respondents still want Isoc to continue to exist and expand its role to answer to the wishes of the people in different areas, particularly to cope with cyber threats.

This opinion poll was conducted after questions were raised whether the government should dissolve Isoc. Those opposed to Isoc, particularly the Move Forward Party, said the agency's responsibilities are similar to those of the military.

Thai Enquirer, an English-language news website, ran a commentary that expressed disappointment that Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin appeared unwilling to reform or rein in Isoc, saying the army-affiliated body has taken on a political role that goes beyond its original remit. The author of the commentary questioned whether Mr Sreetha was "a stooge of the military" because he opposes dissolving Isoc.

This prompted Mr Srettha to post on X (formerly Twitter) to hit back at the critic.

“Dissolving Isoc was never a part of the Pheu Thai Party’s (PTP) policy, neither before, during nor after the election,” he wrote.

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