ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailMenu BurgerPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon SearchSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
Politics

Japan to bring forward infrastructure cybersecurity review

Increasingly sophisticated attacks lead to fears of service disruption

Increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks have prompted officials to bring forward a review that was planned for after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. (Photo by Wataru Ito)

TOKYO -- The Japanese government will revise cybersecurity guidelines for 14 areas of infrastructure, including electricity grids and waterways, by this spring. The review had been planned for after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks have prompted officials to bring forward the change.

Recent technological developments have made remote cyberattacks easier.

If an infrastructure system were to freeze during an attack, the supply of water, electricity or gas would likely be disrupted. There are also fears that aircraft and train information could be leaked and falsified, hindering safe travel operations.

While Japan has not yet fallen victim an attack that has interrupted services, certain companies have experienced disruption, according to a government official.

In December, 30.6 million Softbank subscriber lines were damaged, leading to widespread service interruptions. The outage was linked to software at switching facilities of Swedish telecommunications equipment maker Ericsson.

The government will hold a panel hearing on Jan. 17 to start the process, with the aim of strengthening information sharing between the public and private sectors.

This April, a group of government organizations, private companies and universities will gather to discuss the latest cyberattack techniques and countermeasures, in what will be the first instance of the public and private sectors addressing the issue together. Membership will be kept confidential to minimize the risk of information being leaked.

Business officials say measures to deal with defective equipment will also be included, in order to help prevent incidents such as Softbank’s service outage.

In addition, companies will be asked to store data domestically. Certain entities that manage infrastructure systems store some noncritical information on overseas servers, according to a government official. Keeping that information in the country would lower the risk of breaches or data falsification.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends April 19th

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media