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[] Japanese IT businesses turn to Gods to ward off viruses, hackers,

Mal wieder etwas für die Rubrik "Kann man immer mal für einen Scherz in
einem Vortrag gebrauchen". :-)

07 January 2004

TOKYO: The new year in Japan is a time for fresh starts and spiritual 
cleansing for not only the residents of Tokyo, but also their 

At the Kanda Myojin shrine in downtown Tokyo, IT businesses and the 
nearby electronic shops association of Akihabara have gathered to 
purify their computers and protect them from common electronic evils.

For most, that meant warding off computer viruses and hackers.

"I work in software development and we faced many threats such as 
computer viruses and hackers, and if our computers breakdown we can't 
work anymore. So that is why it's important to me to pray for a year 
of safe business," said 30-year old Katsutoshi Honma whose computer 
was blessed according to the ancient Shinto traditions.

He, like many others, feel even the best anti-viral software and 
security measures are not enough to beat what has quickly become the 
bane of life with a computer, after an e-mail spam.

Japan, like many other industrialised nations, was hit badly by a 
plethora of viruses in 2003 such as the Slammer and Blaster viruses.

And according to the Japanese National Police Agency, the nation's 
computer network sees an average of 35,000 cyber attacks (including 
virus and hackers) a month.

For many computer users and sellers, it's matter of good business to 
safeguard themselves in any way possible.

"We've organised these ceremonies here at the Kanda Myojin to bless 
for one year those computers and those who do business with 
computers," said Yumi Yamaga, who represented the electronic retail 
shop owners of Akihabara.

In that very district, they also organised the distribution of good 
luck charms in the hope that consumers would feel comfortable buying 
one or two laptops. - CNA

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