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Cyber crime in Japan - statistics & facts

As of January 2021, Japan counted close to 117 million active internet users, ranking fourth in the Asia Pacific region. Due to the growing importance of digitization for the economy as well as people’s daily lives, security concerns have become an important domestic issue in Japan.

Growing awareness of the government

Current forms of internet crimes in Japan cover a wide range of offenses. In 2019, a surge in online banking frauds was detected, with the amount of money lost due to online banking frauds climbing to over 2.5 billion Japanese yen. In 2020, cyberbullying became a major issue in the country due to the suicide of Hana Kimura, a female professional wrestler who also appeared on a reality television series. During that year, the police also recorded several hundred cases of suspected cyber crimes related to the coronavirus (COVID-19). Other offenses include issues such as unauthorized computer access, illegal business practices, as well as illegal or harmful content, which encompasses many cases of child prostitution and child pornography. Cyber security in general has become a prevalent issue in Japan, partly because of the economy’s dependence on the internet, electronic devices, and automation technology, and partly because of Japan’s geopolitical position and uneasy relations with its neighboring countries. While Japanese bureaucrats and politicians were comparatively slow in responding to these issues, the country has been in a state of catching up in recent years with regards to its cyber security strategy. The government’s vision of an increasingly interconnected society, called “Society 5.0”, as well as the 2020 Tokyo Olympics provided an important impetus to strengthen the infrastructure against external and internal threats. Among other measures, the government revised the Telecommunications Business Act in 2018 in order to enable the National Institute of Information and Communication Technology (NICT) to actively survey Internet of Things (IoT) devices in its attempts to prevent DDoS attacks.

Countermeasures of companies and individuals

While the number of cleared cyber crime cases gradually increased since the mid-2010s, companies and individuals do not solely rely on state institutions when it comes to defending themselves against such crimes. According to a survey among more than two thousand companies in Japan, almost all businesses had implemented information security measures to counter online threats, with most enterprises reporting to have installed anti-virus programs on computers and other devices. Due to the increasing reliance on the internet, tools and services promising to improve information security have become a necessity not only for businesses, but also for many consumers accessing the internet through personal devices. This is especially the case as the spread of smartphones in the 2010s has made mobile internet access much more common and convenient than before, increasing the need for effective mobile security. As the importance of connected devices is expected to grow further in the coming years, it is likely that the information security market will expand as well.

Key figures

The most important key figures provide you with a compact summary of the topic of "Cyber crime in Japan" and take you straight to the corresponding statistics.

Cyber crime cases

User attitudes on privacy issues

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the {amountStatistics} most important statistics relating to "Cyber crime in Japan".

Cyber crime in Japan

Dossier on the topic

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Cyber crime in Japan - statistics & facts

As of January 2021, Japan counted close to 117 million active internet users, ranking fourth in the Asia Pacific region. Due to the growing importance of digitization for the economy as well as people’s daily lives, security concerns have become an important domestic issue in Japan.

Growing awareness of the government

Current forms of internet crimes in Japan cover a wide range of offenses. In 2019, a surge in online banking frauds was detected, with the amount of money lost due to online banking frauds climbing to over 2.5 billion Japanese yen. In 2020, cyberbullying became a major issue in the country due to the suicide of Hana Kimura, a female professional wrestler who also appeared on a reality television series. During that year, the police also recorded several hundred cases of suspected cyber crimes related to the coronavirus (COVID-19). Other offenses include issues such as unauthorized computer access, illegal business practices, as well as illegal or harmful content, which encompasses many cases of child prostitution and child pornography. Cyber security in general has become a prevalent issue in Japan, partly because of the economy’s dependence on the internet, electronic devices, and automation technology, and partly because of Japan’s geopolitical position and uneasy relations with its neighboring countries. While Japanese bureaucrats and politicians were comparatively slow in responding to these issues, the country has been in a state of catching up in recent years with regards to its cyber security strategy. The government’s vision of an increasingly interconnected society, called “Society 5.0”, as well as the 2020 Tokyo Olympics provided an important impetus to strengthen the infrastructure against external and internal threats. Among other measures, the government revised the Telecommunications Business Act in 2018 in order to enable the National Institute of Information and Communication Technology (NICT) to actively survey Internet of Things (IoT) devices in its attempts to prevent DDoS attacks.

Countermeasures of companies and individuals

While the number of cleared cyber crime cases gradually increased since the mid-2010s, companies and individuals do not solely rely on state institutions when it comes to defending themselves against such crimes. According to a survey among more than two thousand companies in Japan, almost all businesses had implemented information security measures to counter online threats, with most enterprises reporting to have installed anti-virus programs on computers and other devices. Due to the increasing reliance on the internet, tools and services promising to improve information security have become a necessity not only for businesses, but also for many consumers accessing the internet through personal devices. This is especially the case as the spread of smartphones in the 2010s has made mobile internet access much more common and convenient than before, increasing the need for effective mobile security. As the importance of connected devices is expected to grow further in the coming years, it is likely that the information security market will expand as well.

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