Is it Time to Axe the Fax in Japan?

Japan has been in the spotlight recently with the country scrapping their plans to ban the physical fax machine from offices in Tokyo after hundreds of Japanese bureaucrats argued for them to stay.  

Although seen as an obsolete technology, the nearly 60-year-old fax machine still reigns supreme in Japan. A recent study showed that every government department, virtually every Japanese company and more than one-third of homes still have a fax machine.

Japan’s Administrative Reforms Minister, Taro Kono, set to eliminate fax machines back in October 2020 when Japan was at the peak of its COVID-19 outbreak. Fax machines caused the country unnecessary delays in testing results being received on time.

Mr. Kono says that fax machines are a “hinderance” to telework during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially when employees are required to work from home but must return to their offices to send and receive faxes.

Even with many reasons for Japan to toss the fax machine, many Japanese offices are worried that switching from fax to email will present a security risk. With sensitive data being transmitted via fax every day, this resulted in the backlash that prompted the cabinet body for anti-fax reform to stand down.

However, there are alternative options available, such as online faxing services, that Japanese organizations can easily switch to for convenient, secure and reliable faxing. Online faxing services, like Faxaroo, provide everyone with the ability to send a fax from anywhere via an internet-enabled device.

With all faxes encrypted, processed via TLS encryption and automatically deleted from our system once they’ve been sent, Faxaroo offers ultimate security when sending sensitive documents. Send a fax to any fax number in Japan, or internally to Australia, Canada, Germany and the U.S. on a pay-per-page basis.

Fax machines not only present mobility, security and reliability issues, they put lives at risk when being classed as a compulsory communications tool during the COVID-19 pandemic.


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