Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Never confide your secret to a Japanese spy! It might end shared on the web!

There was a time when we preferred cables to nowadays WiFis & Mobiles

Welcome to the grey world but don't be a snitch!

The other day while I was attending, as a Board Director, a session of the general assembly of my press club in Tokyo, I found out that I had been targeted a couple of times during the assembly meeting by a hacking group who tried to hook some info from my computer and poison my system. Of course I entered into research and what I found out after alarming all the security firms, experts, hackers and governments pro' "et al" was compelling and informative as one of my foreign correspondent colleague uses to say. Of course, I won't elaborate here what, who and where from. (Privacy thing you know...)

But luckily I was warned and my computer although opened to any "dangerous liaison" such as a WiFi communication potential harm, indeed survived. Well, kind of.

This is just to introduce the latest red face thing that happened to some officials of the Tokyo police forces just while everyone in the paranoid world of Tokyo government security agencies is preparing the Yokohama held APEC VIPs' Summit and embarked onto a blitzkrieg alike monitoring of all what could get wrong. Of course they are helped in this endeavor by their faithful allies and friends, friends of whom I naturally consider myself as being one of the closest devoted loyal and good hearted watcher.

This is why I like the Asahi and Mainichi pieces of today November 2nd followings. Quote: "a potential disaster that could shatter international trust in Japanese police, sensitive documents related to international terrorism, including personal information about informants and suspects, have leaked onto the Internet...

... The leaked documents, dating from 2004 through 2010, include those connected to the Third Foreign Affairs Division of the Metropolitan Police Department's Public Security Bureau, which deals with international terrorism, as well as the National Police Agency and the Aichi prefectural police..." (Asahi)

"Most of the documents were in PDF format. They are believed to have been created by the MPD's third foreign affairs division, which handles international terrorism investigations, as well as by the National Police Agency (NPA) and Aichi Prefectural Police, among other authors. Most of them were dated up until about January last year." (Mainichi)

By the way, you noticed the similarities in reporting, thanks to the Japanese kisha club system daily briefing.

"This is not simply a leakage of information, but a crisis for Japanese intelligence activities," a senior police official said. Sources at Tokyo's Metropolitan Police Department said officials suspect the highly confidential information included in more than 100 documents leaked through file-sharing software. They are studying the contents of the leaked documents while questioning officers involved to determine how the information got out.

The leaked data on foreigners who have cooperated with international anti-terrorism investigations both in Japan and abroad includes their names, investigators' plans to contact them and records of the information they provided. The leak could put their lives at risk, according to a former high-ranking police official who spent many years working in security matters."

"Police have found 114 documents online. Some of them contained detailed personal information on people believed to be cooperating with terrorism investigations in Japan and overseas, including their names, addresses and family information. Some of the documents contained information on foreigners in Japan who are apparently under investigation, together with information believed to have been supplied by the FBI."

"This is not the first time police information has spilled onto the Internet. In 2006 and 2007, investigative information leaked from the personal computers of officers at the Ehime and Yamanashi prefectural police departments as well as the Metropolitan Police Department's Kitazawa Police Station.

The officers all used the Winny file-sharing software. But the latest incident is by far the most serious in terms of safety of individuals and international trust in Japanese investigative authorities. Information on possible terrorist activities is accumulated over a long period through the building of relationships with individuals who can provide information about suspected terrorist organizations. Important individuals connected to such organizations also have to be placed under surveillance." Unquote.

Asahi, the full story here http://bit.ly/a5rWi8 and "Leaked terror investigation documents contained info on people helping police probes" The Mainichi writes http://bit.ly/dwyN08

I advise some computer users who have major responsibilities and not a very good command of their PC settings, files sharing und-so-weiter to drop by for a coffee with a few friends of mine. Not that we could be surprised to see our IPs' among some leaked data but rather to have a pleasant chat.

Last, I thank my honorable sources, and not the lowest in rank, at the TMG who confirmed for years now the lack of preparation of Tokyo in case of major catastrophe. The info-war has never been as strong and striking as today!

Sources: Asahi, Mainichi, Kyodo, Afp, Alternet, Freakingnews, Reporter's Notes and my little right finger

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