• Kyodo

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The government plans to isolate its systems handling critical information from the Internet to protect data from cyberattacks, following an attack in May that led to a massive personal data leak from the pension service, government sources said.

The measure will be included in a draft strategy to bolster Japan’s defenses against cyberattacks, which is to be formulated when a meeting of government heads for cybersecurity strategies is convened next month.

The government is stepping up efforts to improve computer security following a rise in the number of reported cyberattacks on government organizations to 264 in fiscal 2014, double the figure from the previous year, the sources said Thursday.

Reports of cases involving the opening of infected email attachments tripled in fiscal 2014 from the year before, they said.

In May, an email attachment infected a computer at the Japan Pension Service, leading to the names and ID numbers of about 1.25 million people being leaked.

“The government is seeking to drastically strengthen its cybersecurity policy so that the public will feel safe,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Thursday at a meeting of the cybersecurity team, which he heads.

The updated cybersecurity strategy will call for training related to cloud computing at government agencies using textbooks compiled through joint efforts by industry, government and academia.

The government is also eyeing expanded monitoring by the National Center of Incident Readiness and Strategy for Cybersecurity, a key organization established in January to counter cyberattacks against Japan.

The pension service said after the massive data leak that it had cut Internet access for all of its computers, but an employee continued to receive and send emails for a week afterward.

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