Gyaku Website: Accenture, JAPAN-VISIT, future Immig surveillance of NJ

Hello Blog. Got something very interesting to impart. In a new website entitled GYAKU, which offers in-depth reportage about lesser-known stories, we have the eye-opening story about the future of electronic surveillance of foreigners entering Japan.

I have reported in the past about how Japan’s new Immigration powers will now reinstate fingerprinting for all foreigners who cross Japan’s borders:

Mainichi Daily News, Dec 5, 2004: “Japan seeks foreigners’ fingerprints, photos, lists to fight terror”
http://www.debito.org/mainichi120504.html

Japan Times May 24, 2005: “Here comes the fear: Antiterrorist law creates legal conundrums for foreign residents”
http://www.debito.org/japantimes052405.html

Japan Times November 22, 2005: “THE NEW “I C YOU” CARDS: LDP proposal to computer chip foreigners has great potential for abuse”
http://www.debito.org/japantimes112205.html

Even though Japan’s NJ residents have fought long and hard (and successfully, until the police took advantage of the fear of terrorism) to end fingerprinting as part of Immigration procedure.
http://www.debito.org/fingerprinting.html

So here’s how it’s playing out. According to GYAKU, company without a country (which to some constitutes a security risk in itself) ACCENTURE (which created the digital mug-shot and fingerprint scans seen at US Immigration nowadays) has not only acted as consultant to Japan’s upcoming version, but also has been awarded the contract to develop Japan’s system for a song. This means that Japan becomes the second country to institute one of these systems in the world, in a bid to get a toehold in Asia and profit from the fear of terrorism.

The issues involved, the political backrooming, and links to all the necessary documents to make the case for concern are available at
http://gyaku.jp/en/index.php?cmd=contentview&pid=000188

Here’s an excerpt from the article. Debito in Sapporo

======================================
Accenture, JAPAN-VISIT, and the mystery of the 100,000 yen bid
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
By gyaku (http://gyaku.jp/en/)

The story first came to light nearly one year ago, on April 21, 2006, during questioning at the House of Representatives Committee on Judicial Affairs in the Japanese National Diet. Hosaka Nobuto of the Japan Social Democratic Party, a former journalist active in educational issues and one of the leaders in the fight against wiretapping laws in Japan, launched a barrage of questions at government officials over revelations that a contract for a new biometric immigration system had been awarded to Accenture Japan Ltd., a corporation previously hired in the role of “advisor” for the same project. For many years a thorn in the side of the ruling party coalition, Hosaka in 2000 was ranked by the Japanese newspaper Asahi shimbun as the most active member of the House of Representatives, with a record 215 questions, a number that rose to over 400 by 2006 [1]. The questions Hosaka put to the government on April 21st were undoubtedly some of the most important of his career, and yet, now nearly a year later, the story that he fought hard to publicize has barely made a ripple in the Japanese media, and remains virtually unknown to the outside world.

The background to the story reads as follows: Accenture Japan Ltd., the Japanese branch of the consulting firm Accenture, active in the Japanese market as far back as 1962 but only incorporated in Japan in 1995, received in May 2004 a contract to draft a report investigating possibilities for reforming the legacy information system currently in use at the Japanese Immigration Bureau. The investigation was requested in the context of government plans, only later made public, to re-implement and modernize a certification system to fingerprint and photograph every foreigner over the age of 18 entering the country, replacing an earlier fingerprinting system abandoned in the year 2000 over privacy concerns after prolonged resistance from immigrant communities.

Earlier the same year, against the backdrop of a post-9/11 society anxious about the threat of vaguely-defined dark-skinned “terrorists”, the U.S. had begun taking fingerprints of foreigners with visas entering the U.S. at international airports and other major ports. A program entitled US-VISIT (Visitor and Immigrant Status Information Technology) was initiated in July of 2003 with the intention to secure nearly 7000 miles of borders along Mexico and Canada, including more than 300 land, air and sea ports [2]. Described as “the centerpiece of the United States government’s efforts to transform our nation’s border management and immigration systems”, planners envisioned “a continuum of biometrically-enhanced security measures that begins outside U.S. borders and continues through a visitor’s arrival in and departure from the United States” [3].

======================
EXCERPT ENDS

Read the rest of the article at:

http://gyaku.jp/en/index.php?cmd=contentview&pid=000188
ENDS

4 comments on “Gyaku Website: Accenture, JAPAN-VISIT, future Immig surveillance of NJ

  • –FORWARDING FROM A FRIEND. DEBITO

    Whoa, big story there about Accenture. By coincidence, I saw their poster ad (featuring Tiger Woods) on the Tsukuba Express today. Turns out that they have an open house tomorrow of sorts, for hiring engineers. Also in May and June.
    http://careers3.accenture.com/ATS/Japan/experienced/eh_careerseminar_weekend.htm
    http://www.accenture.com/Countries/Japan/About_Accenture

    Funky theme music here:
    http://www.accenture.com/Global/High_Performance_Business/default.htm

    List of clients here. I picked up a few of interest and cut & pasted them below.
    http://www.accenture.com/global/services/default.htm

    Looks like they also do work for these people:
    # U.S. Defense Logistics Agency: Supply Chain Management
    # United States Air Force: Finance & Performance Management
    * Arizona Department of Revenue: Business Reengineering/Integrated Tax System (BRITS)
    * Arizona Department of Revenue: Public Service Value
    * Australia Taxation Office: Customer Relationship Management
    * Belgium Government: Belgium ePortal
    * Canada Post Corporation
    * City of New York: NYC 311
    * Defense Logistics Agency: Supply Chain
    * Delaware Department of State: Online Government Service Delivery
    * District of Columbia Office of Tax and Revenue: Revenue Management
    * Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation: Licensing System
    * Florida$Bc(BMiami Dade County SPIRIT Solution: Human Services
    * Griffith University: Finance and Performance Management
    * Indiana Department of Revenue (IDOR): Public Sector Value
    * International Trade Administration: Performance Management Framework
    * Ireland Office of the Civil Service and Local Appointments Commissioners (OCSLAC): Secure Online Job Application
    * Ireland’s Office of the Revenue Commissioners
    * Metro St. Louis: Predictive Monitoring Pilot for Vehicle Maintenance
    * Ministry of Community and Social Services
    * Ministry of Consumer and Business Services
    * New Zealand Customs Service: Customs Modernization Program
    * New Zealand Department of Child, Youth and Family Services: Human Services
    * New Zealand Inland Revenue Department: Online Information Systems
    * New Zealand: Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ): Electronic Business Strategy
    * Ontario Ministry of Health: Public Service Value
    * Portugal Tax Department: Revenue
    Just FYI. Interesting stuff.

  • The head of Accenture Japan is Chikatomo Hodo aka “Chikatomo K. Hodo”:

    ( http://itpro.nikkeibp.co.jp/article/COLUMN/20060724/244073/ )
    程 近智(ほど・ちかとも)氏 1960年7月31日生まれ。神奈川県出身。82年に米スタンフォード大学工学部を卒業し,アクセンチュアに入社。91年に米コロンビア大学経営大学院でMBAを取得。95年にパートナーに就任。その後,eコマース推進コアチームリーダー,ビジネス・ローンチ・センター長を経て2000年に戦略グループ統括パートナー。01年に通信・ハイテク本部通信業統括パートナーを兼務,03年に通信・ハイテク本部統括本部長。05年9月に代表取締役,06年 4月に代表取締役社長に就任した。現在も通信・ハイテク本部統括本部長を兼務する。趣味は温泉旅行,史跡巡り,ゴルフ。

    【アクセンチュア】
    設立 : 1995年12月
    資本金 : 非公開
    売上高 : 非公開
    従業員数 : 約2500人(2006年2月時点)
    事業概要 :コンサルティング最大手。経営だけでなく,情報システムやアウトソーシング分野にも強みを持つ。全世界で約13万人の人材を抱える。NGNの構築, MVNO(仮想移動体通信事業者)のビジネスやシステム面を支援するサービスなども手がけ,世界の主要な通信事業者とパイプを持つ。

    And he may be conveniently reached at Chikatomo.Hodo@accenture.com
    ( http://www.accenture.com/NR/rdonlyres/01C0AAF4-0863-4B00-A40C-A1CF849E7A00/0/A4_NeweCommerceFormsPoV.pdf )

    Please consider dropping him a civil note and telling him how much you appreciate the efforts and competence of Accenture Japan on the new biometric project for the GOJ.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>