The communications ministry plans to employ decoy networks to lure cyberattacks in order to garner information and observe patterns that will help prevent future damage from malicious viruses and other forms of attack, sources said Tuesday.

The test, which is aimed to quickly respond to the diverse methods of cyberattacks, is planned to start in fiscal 2018, which begins April 1, according to the sources.

The ministry will include ¥200 million for building the new system in its budgetary request for the next fiscal year, the sources said.

If the networks encounter an unknown attack, the ministry will promptly analyze its characteristics and share the information with private security software makers to prevent the damage from spreading.

Ransomware attacks, in which files on computers and other terminals are encrypted and money demanded for their decryption, wreaked havoc around the globe earlier this year.

To limit such damage, the government sees it as essential to grasp attack patterns and tactics, which are becoming increasingly complex, at an early stage and take countermeasures.

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