A government-backed human trafficking and sexual oppression awareness campaign kicked off on December 24 in four of Kampong Cham's nine districts, designed to prevent individuals from falling prey to exploitation.

From west to east, these districts are Batheay, Cheung Prey, Prey Chhor and Kampong Siem, the latter of which borders Kampong Cham town.

Kampong Cham deputy provincial governor Pang Dany warned that there are unscrupulous scammers and middlemen out there with underhanded tactics to manipulate innocent people looking for work, and send them abroad for exploitative purposes.

“Such actions are precise examples of human trafficking, and that is banned by law,” she said, calling on the public to be vigilant when a purported broker or agent promises a high-paying job overseas.

“Such promises usually mean that they are crooks who intend to cheat you, and benefit from you for their own personal gain," she said.

"They will sell you to work for business owners abroad.”

Dany advised those who have gone overseas for work to hold on to their passports and ID cards at all times.

She also implored them to keep emergency phone numbers handy in the event of possible exploitation or other major concern, including those of the nearest Cambodian embassy or consulate, relatives, and local authorities.