Why Human Rights Matter to dtac

We believe that mobile connectivity enables the exchange of ideas and access to information. We also recognize that there are human rights challenges in markets where we operate. Respect and continuous improvement are therefore important to our approach to human rights.
Two human rights issues that are directly related to dtac are the right to information and freedom of expression. We are committed to promoting these basic rights by providing secure, inclusive, and accessible connectivity services. We also promote transparent communication and freedom of speech in the organization.
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Human Rights: the Foundation of Responsible Business

The telecommunications industry faces risks from human rights violations throughout the value chain, from poor working conditions and unfair labor treatment in the supply chain to potential violations of employee and consumer rights both online and offline.

Underpinning its respect for human rights, dtac has developed a responsible business framework, drawing on international standards including the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the ILO Core Conventions.

We also conduct human rights due diligence with internal and external stakeholders to ensure that we can have a positive impact on the economy, society, and environment.


 Human Rights 

 Due Diligence 

dtac adheres to the guidelines of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), in which we are expected to “know and show” that we do not infringe on human rights through our business operations and relationships.


This requires a process of human rights due diligence to identify, prevent, mitigate, and account for how we address human rights impacts. This process includes:


  1. Assessing actual and potential human rights impacts
  2. Acting upon the findings
  3. Tracking effectiveness over time
  4. Communicating how impacts are identified and addressed


dtac conducts human rights due diligence every two years with internal and external stakeholders as part of our Sustainability Policy.

In 2022, dtac worked with Sal Forest Company Limited to conduct human rights due diligence. The due diligence was conducted based on reports and studies about human rights challenges in the telecommunications industry worldwide as well as the assessment framework of Telenor Group, a major shareholder of dtac. The findings showed that, aside from human rights challenges that are unique to the country, such as authority requests, the overall situation in Thailand is mostly in line with global trends.

In assessing the level of human rights risk, the primary focus was on issues that are difficult to be remedied, including those related to health and safety that may lead to workplace fatalities. These potential risks were mapped with risks in dtac’s business operations, based on data obtained from stakeholder interviews, policy guidelines, corporate practices, etc.




In many cases, mobile operators are obliged to comply with authority requests that may impact human rights and privacy, such as personal information requests, blocking access to content, and network shutdowns in certain areas.

dtac has established strict guidelines for handling authority requests based on Thai law, universal human rights principles, and the principle of necessity and proportionality.

In the past few years, dtac has increased transparency in its work processes by publishing an annual authority request disclosure report.


 Open Talk 


One tool we use to promote freedom of expression within the organization is ‘Open Talk’, a direct platform to ask questions to dtac’s top management. The platform is 100% anonymous and doesn’t record a sender’s identity. It allows senior management to hear about problems and suggestions from employees. In many cases, the platform has led to improvements in day-to-day operations and employee experiences.

“Most human rights challenges that the telco industry faces are related to connectivity, which come with both opportunities and risks. While connectivity services enable us to communicate and spread information faster, they also increase the risk of spreading information that may violate human rights, cause data breaches, or constitute a form of hate speech. And it could prompt many negative consequences, especially among those who are most vulnerable to misinformation.”


Rachaya Kulnapongse
Head of Sustainability, dtac