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Get your fax right: Bungling officials spark nuclear scare after quake

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It is good to know that they are still using (20 year old) state-of-the-art equipment at these nuclear facilities.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

a dinosaur energy system using dinosaur communication tools run by other dinosaurs.

10 ( +15 / -5 )

Why does Japan persist in using fax machines?

11 ( +14 / -3 )

Can the TEPCO incompetents ever do anything right ?  The " double checking procesures they have in place sure inspire confidence  don,t they....and still with the FAX !!!

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Why does Japan persist in using fax machines?

I think it has to do with the really absurd "hanko" system. Though I could be wrong, as I've used other applications that accept scanned hanko documents.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

No, enough!! What can we trust? First of all we hear about this 1 day later, so somebody tries to cover something up. Two, since this is Tepco, how can we be sure everything IS alright at the plant and they are not trying to downplay some accident instead? I'm sick of these baboons running one of the most dangerous industries.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

A fax? Bwahahaha! I forgot it is still 1988 in Japan.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

a dinosaur energy system using dinosaur communication tools run by other dinosaurs.

Yup! japan's nuclear industry in a nutshell

No, enough!! What can we trust? First of all we hear about this 1 day later, so somebody tries to cover something up. Two, since this is Tepco, how can we be sure everything IS alright at the plant and they are not trying to downplay some accident instead? I'm sick of these baboons running one of the most dangerous industries

EXACTLY!!!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

both should be let go, asap.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

So during a quake, the phone lines go down. I wonder if there is a backup plan?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

the fact that people still use faxes is humorous enough

3 ( +6 / -3 )

And yet the myth of high tech Japan persists.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Japan culture keeps old customs but blends it with new. That’s the reason we see fax used along side emails. Hanko still used but hanko scanning machine working along with face/finger scanners too.

Even the Tepco maker checker system ( regardless of fax communication) relies on 2 humans only without any automated software system providing the report and humans just checking and reviewing it.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Why does Japan persist in using fax machines?

It may be old but it is relatively easy to use a fax machine comparing to using a computer or smart phone to send a email. Also many Asian languages like Japanese and Chinese cannot be easily entered using a keyboard unless you have learnt the inputting methods.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Did the staff member really tick the wrong box, or is that just their cover sheet... er, story

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Also many Asian languages like Japanese and Chinese cannot be easily entered using a keyboard unless you have learnt the inputting methods.

Funny that places like say Singapore, HK, Taiwan etc mysteriously managed to figure out that huge challenge.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

The checkboxes are probably right beside each other rather than being in separate sections or even colour coded. Wouldn't matter to the fax recipient but kinda makes a difference for the sender and the outcome

6 ( +6 / -0 )

A missile attack warning was sent out to people in Hawaii in January 2108, people freaked out and rightly so. I wondered what ever happened to those who sent the erroneous message, looks like they were hired by TEPCO

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It does make sense to use faxes though. They are a redundant system, meaning the message will still get through in the event of power failure, internet outages etc. Phone systems and fax systems are slightly different and I believe separated networks.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

All forms of communication old and new need to be kept alive and around. FAX/phone landlines/radio SW/CB radio/morse code/. When there's a major disaster, like Tohoku we lose the modern versions like mobile phones.

This nuclear plant has been in shut down since 2011 and hopefully will continue to be in the future.

The NRA needs to investigate this event.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

And these are the idiots, or idiotic systems that ensure we are to be protected from nuclear accidents....history has taught us, not the case. Might have to fax the government department then visit to put my ¥100 stamp on it and then pay ¥1000000 in tax to ensure that they legitimately lost my fax and really they don't care. Next year they will be moved to the department dealing with mascots. Mascots are fun. And they don't leak death.

All good.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@zichi

you are correct. When large disasters tend to happen, modern forms of technology tend to be the first to go down.

However, while having those communication mediums are important, they should not be the primary form of communication especially when you are trying to get information out quickly.

Still, I can understand how one person could make a mistake, but when the person in charge of double checking the document for mistakes ends up not noticing the mistake, something needs to be done. That person’s job in that situation is to make sure it’s done correctly.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

It’s frightening to think that in 2019 they are using antiquated communication methods to report potential nuclear catastrophes. I think the last time I sent a fax was maybe 1998, over twenty years ago. Who wants to bet their computers are still running Windoze XP as well?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

JJ Jetplane

I agree that's why I said the NRA should investigate.

We still have a fax machine sitting on my computer table with the latest techs. Part of the phone which itself is an internet phone and not a landline phone. Guess we use the fax a few times per year. I don't have a printer which I haven't used for more than 10 years. Instead I do my printing outside usually at Lawson's these days.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

All forms of communication old and new need to be kept alive and around. FAX/phone landlines/radio SW/CB radio/morse code/. When there's a major disaster, like Tohoku we lose the modern versions like mobile phones.

Indeed, but they should only be used as a back up. We still have our landline, keep important documents and information on paper. In times of trouble and there's no electricity or the mobile network is down/switched off, you are doomed if you rely on your mobile for everything.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Why are such people in the gov't ???.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Do the hustle

Nuclear site computers typically run on very old outdated operating systems and software from the 80’s because recent technology is more prone to being hacked and with those systems, you can’t hack them unless you are onsite.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

TEPCO apologised and vowed not to make the same mistake.

Afterwords, TEPCO employees brainstormed diligently to come up with tomorrow’s mistake.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

sf2kToday  11:10 am JST

a dinosaur energy system using dinosaur communication tools run by other dinosaurs.

Would the Flintstones have done a better job ?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Why are such people in the gov't ???.

They aren't.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Funny on too many levels! First... fax machines?? Really? Do they still have the "pokeberu" strapped on their belts?

Second, TEPCO again? I love the "vow not to let it happen again"... again.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

C'mon, just the fax man

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Must admit, typo came to mind rather than word play when looking at title. Using fax isn't a problem perhaps it's more reliable than the conventional methods, and a direct line of communication is established. Feels like the individuals were unqualified and confused.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I sent a fax yesterday. When the call completed I was 100 percent sure it had been delivered and not intercepted. With an email, I would have had to wait for confirmation of its delivery, and electronic copies of it would persist indefinitely and insecurely in cyberspace.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

So what?

Many research institutes still use Fax as the safest workaround to counter hacking and backdoor problems in communications devices. In other words, all of your Western company information will already be under the control of Chinese gov.

I was rather surprised that many JT readers still do not know this common sense practice.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

And if you personally hand deliver you can be doubly sure the recipent received. Fax is not as secure as you think. Lines can be tapped much easier than an email being intercepted.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The point should not be on why they use fax to communicate but the person stuffed it up and sent out incorrect information. If the person used a landline telephone to call local authorities, is he going to be critised for using outdated technology (telephone was invented way before fax machine)?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@JonathanJo @numb

Faxes are easily intercepted. This has been going on for decades. Radio signals and phones lines can be intercepted easily. Intercepting faxes are not a new concept. That’s why they sent many things in code back then.

Fax machines are easier to intercept than emails.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Fax machines are easier to intercept than emails.

Emails are not hard to intercept, and email is an inherently insecure format. Sensitive data should almost never be sent by email.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The faith some people here have in faxes is really misguided. Faxes can be intercepted and hacked via landlines.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Emails are not hard to intercept, and email is an inherently insecure format. Sensitive data should almost never be sent by email.

Weird I got a down vote for simply pointing out a fact.

Someone doesn't like reality very much.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Strangerland

Weird I got a down vote for simply pointing out a fact. Someone doesn't like reality very much.

Not weird at all. I see this frequently with my strictly factual postings complete with links that allow verification.

As for the usage of fax in Japan (and elsewhere), this is something I have been researching. If there is anything distinctive about Japan, it is not that fax is still used, but that home fax machines are not unusual.

Fax is still widely used in other countries and some data suggests that usage is on the increase.

In some sectors in the US, fax is the only acceptable alternative to paper mail. I have frequently seen "fax your congressman" or "fax your congresswoman" in US protest movements. I asked why. The answer? Federal law and regulations requires the preservation and logging of fax messages. E-mail is easily erased.

Based on my reading about the US, it seems fax is widely used in law, medicine, architecture, and some other areas.

In the past 10 years in Japan, I have had to use fax only for communicating with US state governments and UK financial institutions.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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