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Japan Government Java IT Technology

Japanese Government Requires Java and Internet Explorer 11 X86 81

Long time reader AmiMoJo writes: Japan has introduced "My Number", a social security number assigned to citizens and used to access government services. Unfortunately, the My Number management web portal requires the Java plug-in. Because this plug-in is deprecated in many browsers, only Internet Explorer 11 (32 bit) and Safari on Mac are supported. The explanation (translated) given for this is that in order to access My Number contactless card readers Java is the only option. Some browsers support IC card access but it seems that it is not mature enough to be viable.
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Japanese Government Requires Java and Internet Explorer 11 X86

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  • There is nothing more indicative of mediocrity than the presence of the Microsoft-popularized* qualifier "My"

    ----------

    * ... or was it popularized by Perl????

    • Number one, my ass!
  • The link is broken it leads to google translate, but it's just an empty translate page.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I don't get the point of linking translations. Post the damn source, people can run it through a translator if they want.

  • by Master5000 ( 4644507 ) on Friday January 27, 2017 @11:11AM (#53748673)
    They have a lot of paper and are pretty useless with computers. Usually the opposite from what you see in the news about Japan. They aren't that of an advanced nation if you look at the common man. So this shouldn't be a surprise. It's good that they're trying to automate some stuff but it will take some time and they will make some mistakes. Even dumb mistakes like this one.
    • by gtall ( 79522 )

      Example: Sony. Please, someone put this company out of our misery.

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <mojo@@@world3...net> on Friday January 27, 2017 @02:55PM (#53750619) Homepage Journal

      Funny, I visit regularly and find that the general level of technology, the pervasiveness of it, is much higher than the UK. Maybe we are even more backwards.

      They certainly seem pretty good with computers, anyway. And smart phones.

      This is just an issue with incompetent developers and bureaucracy picking the wrong technology a few years ago. Japanese people over on Srad (the new name for Slashdot Japan) seem to agree. Yes, I pilfered the story from there.

  • Yawn (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Yawn, IE11 defaults to 32 bit anyway. You get both 32bit and 64bit installs on windows. And many times 64 bit version has many issues especially with compatibility. In fact, many enterprises disable the 64 bit IE entirely.
    Kinda like how MS themselves recommend NOT using 64 bit office, but only 32 bit office installs, because it's full of issues that MS doesn't bother to fix.

    The x86 IE 11 requirement is a non story.

    The java requirement on the other hand...

    • I am not so sure that it is flaws in the 64 bit version of the software, I feel that it is actually the same problem that plagues Windows in general: Backward compatibility.

      There is an ocean of Office and IE plugins that are 32 bit only. While it is a problem that Microsoft created, it's not exactly their problem to update the vast amount of 3rd party programs which only work with 32 bit versions.

      The thing is, 64 bit is all well and good, but even today, there isn't a compelling reason to have 64-bit addres

    • by gtall ( 79522 )

      It isn't that MS doesn't bother to fix the issues, it is that they cannot fix the issues because no one understands how it is built any longer. It is like a Agile Wet Dream: roll that snowball down the slope of customer features long enough and don't ever redesign its innards and you get Office.

    • Smart card access has been broken [chromium.org] in Linux Chrome for seven odd years, and that's *with* native PKCS plugins. Browser support for smartcards is still horrible. No wonder they had to go for java.

  • waterfox 64 bit works with java!

    Now supermicro can we get a non java ipmi?

  • by plsuh ( 129598 ) <plsuh AT goodeast DOT com> on Friday January 27, 2017 @12:23PM (#53749191) Homepage

    South Korea mandated the use of an ActiveX control for online payments in the 1990s, which has locked companies and banks there into a deprecated and dangerous technology. Only in the last couple of years has the government there started the process of getting rid of the damn POS system.

    Someone please tell the Japanese government that what they are doing is a REALLY bad idea.

    • which has locked companies and banks there into a deprecated and dangerous technology

      The extent of the dangers and the upcoming depreciation of ActiveX were not known at the time of this implementation. There's another way to see this, in the same light as that crappy broadcast standard called NTSC. The first mover always has the disadvantage of uncertainty and at the time the Koreans made the move they were among the most technologically advanced online banking systems in the world.

      The Japanese look like they may have already made this mistake in the past and are already tied into legacy

      • by plsuh ( 129598 )

        The extent of the dangers ... of ActiveX were not known at the time of this implementation

        ActiveX in the browser has always been an absolutely horrendous idea from a security perspective. Everyone I know of who works in the computer security field thought that ActiveX in the browser was a security hole waiting to be exploited from the start. Choosing ActiveX as a basis for electronic payments was a Really Bad Idea. This was obvious even in 1996.

        • works in the computer security field

          Check your timeframe. This field was mostly non-existent at the times Korean banks were going online. In some ways ActiveX may have created the field.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      as a side note: MSN Messenger is still alive and kicking (or was just a few years ago) in S. Korea for a very similar reason, It was required for some kind of government interaction... and so S.K. paid MSFT to keep it up and running

      Which is sad that the best chat client is a 10 year old version of MSN messenger... (still)

      It gained favor in Asian countries over AIM, etc. because it has unicode support earlier than any of the others

    • by Anonymous Coward

      South Korea mandated the use of an ActiveX control for online payments in the 1990s, [...]

      No, they mandated a certain level of crypto, which (in 1999) was only possible via a browser plug-in:

      In fact, there were two versions of SSL: U.S. edition and international edition. The U.S. edition supported 128-bit secret key whereas the international edition supported 40-bit secret key. The problem is that 40-bit secret key is too weak to use for message encryption.

      South Korea needed a better encryption than what the international edition supported, so Korea Internet & Security Agency (KISA) developed 128-bit block cipher called SEED in 1999. The development was necessary since there was a proliferation of personal computers and the internet network during that time all over South Korea. KISA chose ActiveX control to use their secure cipher on Internet Explorer, which was used by the most of internet users in Korea.

      * https://medium.com/@yunkee_lee/why-has-south-korea-been-stuck-with-activex-44c773dbf54
      * https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SEED

      It reached a critical mass and so people were stuck with it. Though the regulations weren't officially lifted until a few years ago (once software crypto ITAR was relaxed).

    • by antdude ( 79039 )

      I am surprised these high tech countries still use stuff like that. :(

  • A lot of places in Asia seem to be in the prehistoric age when it comes to Internet tech.

    Korea has similar issues with a bunch of banking and government sites. I think just in the last year many have fixed it, but my wife has had a f*** of a time because many of those sites required IE6 and ActiveX (for their "security" plugins, ironically). If you're in Korea it's a bit less of an issue because you can just drop by the bank or gov't agency, but it's especially a pain for anyone overseas.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    browser plugin deprecation is a non-issue.

    just use java web start instead: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Java_Web_Start

    all you have to do is write a tiny .jnlp file and link to.

    done.

  • But, how do I run Internet Explorer on my Windows XP machine?
    • by SeaFox ( 739806 )

      But, how do I run Internet Explorer on my Windows XP machine?

      Joke fail.
      Internet Explorer comes with XP. You didn't specify IE11.

  • If the problem are the modern browsers that disabled NPAPI plugins then you can use Palemoon, even the x64 build still runs Java.

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