Japan's government employees protest ban of fax machines in offices

WION Web Team
Tokyo, JapanUpdated: Jul 07, 2021, 11:01 PM IST


Story highlights

Decision to ban fax machines from offices was taken to make sure people can remain safe in their homes during the coronavirus pandemic

With the aim of helping employees during the time of coronavirus pandemic, Japanese authorities decided to banish age-old fax machines from offices. However, the move was not appreciated by locals who turned out to be fans of fax machines.

A cabinet body that is responsible for taking care of administrative reform in Japan rolled out a new decision to abolish the use of fax machines by the end of July. All ministers and organisations were instructed to switch to emails and abandon the 1980s office equipment of communication.

However, this move angered the locals of the Tokyo district of Kasumigaseki. Hundreds of Japanese government officials jumped to the rescue of the fax machine and claimed it will be "impossible" to banish this communication device, local media reported.

The decision was taken with regard to the safety of employees in the coronavirus pandemic. As all offices shifted to work-from-home, some employees were having to travel to the offices to send and receive the fax. To make sure people can remain safe in their homes, the government agency decided to shift all communication to emails from the fax.

Now, the backlash from the employees has led to the government giving up on this mission of helping their employees upgrade in technology. The government has had to rule out the option of transforming the office space into a digital-only operation, local media reported.

The fax fans claim they are protesting the decision simply because they fear the security of sensitive information and "anxiety over the communication environment". Japanese government officials are known to use fax for communicating confidential and sensitive information.

Officials claimed this decision was taken as a part of Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's plan of increasing efficiency in government offices using technology.