Japan again saw a record number of minors falling victim to crimes such as molestation through the use of social media last year, with many of those affected having had unrestricted Internet access, police data released Thursday showed.
Although there were fewer people victimized through the use of chat services connecting total strangers, cases involving social media for connecting multiple acquaintances have increased, according to a report by the National Police Agency.
A total of 1,736 people under 18 had been victimized in the full year, beating the previous record of 1,652 in 2015 by 84, and more than doubling from the levels in 2008, when police began keeping records.
Of the victims, females accounted for 94.8 percent while 86.9 percent used smartphones. A total of 88.2 percent of the 1,465 victims whom police were able to confirm their device status had no Internet filtering, the data showed.
"There are dangers in regular applications and websites people commonly use, and they can be victimized depending on how they use the services," an NPA official said, urging parents to introduce Internet filters to protect their children.
A conference of online site operators will be set up within this fiscal year to take preventive measures as well, the official said.
The largest number of cases involved victims using Twitter at 446, nearly doubling from the previous year, while those using the Gyaruru chat app fell to 136 from 203.
Airbnb estimates that its services contributed 920 billion yen ($8.35 billion) to the Japanese economy in 2016, up 80% from the previous year, as foreign users took advantage of affordable lodging in big cities and rural areas. (Nikkei)
Princess Kako, a granddaughter of Emperor Akihito, will study at the University of Leeds in Britain from September this year to June next year as an exchange student, the Imperial Household Agency said Monday. (Japan Today)
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested the former manager of an illicit parlor in Shinjuku who is suspected of instructing teenage girls to perform sex acts with customers, reports TBS News. (tokyoreporter.com)
The Japanese government has decided to start landfill work at the Henoko coastal area in the city of Nago, Okinawa Prefecture, on Tuesday for the relocation of the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma air base, informed sources said Monday. (Jiji)
The Bank of Japan wants financial institutions to lend more money under its large-scale monetary-easing policy. But it's worried that some regional banks are too eager to offer real estate loans, especially for building rental housing. (NHK)
Two elderly women were hit and killed by a train at a station in Kanagawa Prefecture, south of Tokyo, with surveillance camera footage showing the two jumping on the tracks holding each other's hands, police said Monday. (Japan Today)
Rakuten Inc announced the official launch of "Rakuten Super English," a comprehensive English learning service utilizing technology to provide a practical English learning and a new style of studying. The launch of Rakuten Super English marks Rakuten's entry into the English education business. (Japan Today)