By Chiyomi Sumida and David Allen
Stars and Stripes
December 1, 2006
NAHA, Okinawa Japanese officials confirmed Thursday that information
about U.S. and coalition military movements in Iraq were broadcast by
mistake on the Internet.
The leaked information originated with a Japanese Air Self-Defense
Forces second lieutenant deployed to Iraq and now assigned to the JASDFs
Naha Air Base, Japanese media reported. Police seized the lieutenants
personal computer Wednesday.
We learned that information was leaked on the Internet through a
privately owned computer, which was infected with a virus through Winny,
a file-sharing program, a JASDF spokesman told Stars and Stripes.
According to Japanese media reports, part of the leaked information
contained U.S. Central Command documents describing quantities of
supplies airlifted from U.S. military bases in Iraq, Kuwait and other
An investigation was launched after the data was posted on an Internet
bulletin board. Officials at JASDF headquarters in Tokyo were guarded in
their response to the news reports.
As far as the content of the leaked material, we will refrain from
making any comment because there is a risk of encouraging further
research and, consequently, further spread of the information, said Maj.
Kazutomo Takahashi of the JASDF public affairs office.
He said the agency believed the information was spread on the Internet
However, the data was no longer considered classified, he added. So we
do not think that it would cause any immediate or direct harm. The case
is presently being closely investigated.
In Tokyo, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuhisa Shiozaki on Thursday called
on the Defense Agency to take firm steps to prevent a recurrence.
Although the information leaked on the Internet did not contain anything
that was under any classified category, the fact that such incident
occurred itself is extremely regrettable, Shiozaki said at a news
conference. To properly maintain confidential information is not only
the basis of security for our nation, but also a matter that affects
relations of mutual trust with our allies.
In June, the agency punished 47 personnel in the air, maritime and
ground self-defense forces over six separate information leakage
incidents, Takahashi said. In all of the cases, the information was
leaked from home computers.
Copyright 2006 Stars and Stripes. All Rights Reserved.
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