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SUNDAY, September 25, 2022
Japan’s police warn semiconductor firms of ‘Russian spy’ on the loose

Japan’s police warn semiconductor firms of ‘Russian spy’ on the loose

FRIDAY, July 29, 2022

Japanese police have alerted multiple semiconductor firms in the country that a staff member of Russia’s Trade Representation has been in contact with their employees, according to investigative officials.

The police Public Security Bureau believes the man may have engaged in espionage activities, attempting to steal the companies’ technological information.

The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) decided to alert these companies to the threat of technology leakage over concern that it could not prevent such cases through its investigations alone.

The move is believed to be part of economic security measures being promoted by the government.

Giving an example of the Russian staff member’s activities, officials said that he pretended to ask for directions from employees of a semiconductor company on a street near the company around the end of 2020, before asking for their contact information and inviting them out for a drink.

In approaching the employees of such companies, the man would hide the fact that he belonged to the Russian Trade Representation.

The MPD bureau last year called on such companies to be cautious of the man. The firm’s employees have not been in touch with the man since then, but the man is still in Japan, the officials said.

In January 2020, a then-employee of SoftBank Corp was found to have leaked the firm’s confidential information at the request of another member of the Russian office’s staff. The employee was found guilty of violating the Unfair Competition Prevention Law.

The Japan News

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Japan’s police warn semiconductor firms of ‘Russian spy’ on the loose