Bomb Threats for fun and Profit: Japanese Terrorist Wants his Welfare, and an April Fools “joke” gone Wrong

Who could wish harm on such a pretty sunset?ZAKZAK!

Man Dials Emergency Hotline With City Hall Bomb Threat after “Being Denied Public Assistance”

The Tokai Precinct of the Aichi Prefectural Police arrested an unemployed male (55) on suspicion offorcible obstruction of business for calling in a bomb threat to the Obu City Hall on April 9.

According to the police’s investigation, the man is suspected of calling 110 [emergency hotline similar the 911 in the US] from a public phone from 12:12 until 12:23 on April 9 and reported that “the Obu City Hall building will be bombed at noon on April 12,” obstructing business. He was arrested by police from the Tokai precinct, who rushed to the scene while he was on the line.

The man has explained, “I applied for public assistance, but I was denied.”

ZAKZAK 2006/04/10

Meanwhile, unnamed foreign students in Burma apparently don’t get that it’s supposed to be an April Fool’s joke:

Myanmar junta says bomb was April Fools joke

Published: Monday, 10 April, 2006, 11:56 AM Doha Time

YANGON: Myanmar’s military junta said yesterday that a time bomb found at an upscale international school last week was likely planted by foreign students as part of an April Fools joke.

The bomb, similar in design to explosives that killed 19 people in the capital almost a year ago, had been found and defused at the International School of Yangon on Thursday, security personnel said.

Brigadier-General Kyaw Hsan, information minister of the ruling State Peace and Development Council, told a press conference that investigators had to consider other factors since the students of diplomats from the United States and other foreigners working in Myanmar attend the school.

Good one!

More on Lenovo

A few days ago I discussed the US State Department/Lenovo deal and the theoretical security implications that have led some congressmen to get rather hysterical about the whole thing. Since then, the story has only grown, being featured on the front page of the BBC News site, among others. The BBC piece mentions the following.

The State Department is spending about $13m (£7m) on the Lenovo computers, which are assembled at factories in North Carolina and Mexico.

Mr Carlisle added that the circuit boards are originally made in US ally Taiwan, and not mainland China.

According to an article on, computers assembled entirely outside of the PRC are in fact “an oddity in the PC manufacturing business.” They go on to say:

If US companies are intimidated by probes of the USCC, such probes could be easily applied to virtually every PC manufacturer in the US: Intel motherboards are built by Taiwanese Hon Hai Precision Industries from facilities in Shenzhen; Acer components are built by component manufacturers in Shanghai; Dell PCs are assembled in factories in Suzhou and Shanghai. The same spokesperson went on to say “We [Taiwanese manufactures] do more work in China than we do anywhere else in the world. I don’t even want to think about what would happen to our US clients if we got a USCC probe.”

CDW Government, the company originally contracted to fill the orders for the US government also carries several brands that are assembled in the PRC including Acer, BenQ, D-Link, HP, Sharp and Toshiba.

Really, this entire minor uproar is at best absurd and at worst moronic and insulting. In my previous post I briefly discussed some theoretical ways in which the Lenovo PCs could be bugged, but I don’t in fact believe that there is any more of a real security risk in purchasing Lenovo computers.

Various PC components are manufactured all over the world. Here’s a brief listing off the top of my head of country of manufacture labels that I have personally seen on hardware that I have owned and used.
Hard drives: Japan and Thailand
CPUs: AMD, Germany Intel, Singapore, Malaysia
RAM: Korea, Japan, Germany, Taiwan
Motherboards: Taiwan, China
LCD Panels: Korea, Japan, Taiwan

While this absurdity may not go anywhere, Lenovo may have far more serious problems down the line, of a non-political nature.