Cultural Icon of “IN-KAN”, in New Normal era to come

Japan is no exception from countries and territories around the world,
being forced to accelerate digital transformation (“DX”) and to seek
for “New Normal” during and post COVID-19 Pandemic state-of-emergency

In the midst of such critical timing, on September 16, 2020, then
President of the ruling party, Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), Mr.
Yoshihide SUGA was sworn in as 99th Prime Minister of Japan, and
immediately, inaugurated Suga Cabinet. Along with the critical wheel
steering to cope with COVID-19 Pandemic, digital reformation is being
flagged as main stream of the new cabinet in order to ensure effective

Amongst all issues pertaining to DX effects, pushing to quickly stamp
out the country’s longstanding culture of certifying, or authenticating
documents with seals of “IN-KAN” surfaced to be an immediate impact to
our everyday living.

IN-KAN is a personal seal that bears name of the owner. It has been in
use for government purposes since the eighth(8th) century, and continue
to be an indispensable part of life in Japan. Today, when we “sign” a
document, we use a personal-name-curved IN-KAN instead of, or
in-addition-to, a hand-written signature.

There are three types of IN-KAN independently owned by each individual.
First type is the registered seal, which is called a “JITSU-IN”. As it
shall be officially registered at the city hall or at local government
office, this is the most important and an official seal that associates
with legal authenticity in nature. Other two types are a “GINKOH-IN”
that gives official seal used for identity verification procedure at
monetary institutions, which is registered solely there when opening own
account, and a “MI-TOH-MEH-IN” used merely for casual informal
acceptance or acknowledging that “I-read-the-document”. With this
said, it is rather easy to imagine that the latter two types (i.e.
GINKOH-IN and MI-TOH-MEH-IN) are easily be replaced by e-signature once
an electronic certification process is being set. Meanwhile, the most
important JITSU-IN, I would say that it pertains additional and special
meaning when stamping it, hence, a close and deep consideration is in
need, if or if not, to digitalize its process. Instances required to
seal JITSU-IN are like notarial deed, real estate transaction, mortgage
contracts, vehicle registration, and others that require a deep and
thorough consideration prior to sealing with JITSU-IN.

IN-KAN, curved with individual names, normally has a marking that
easily direct people to identify which way is up-right, but JITSU-IN
does not. Not knowing the fact myself, I would say that it shall give
you the final chance to review if or if not to seal the document by
double checking its stamp-face to ensure which way is up-right.

Likewise, while we expect a smooth and quick transitioning of GINKOH-IN
and MI-TOH-MEH-IN into e-signature with electronic certification, I
personally wish and hope JITSU-IN remains as cultural icon that reminds
people if or if not to authenticate varies depending on multiple
elements. Yes, JITSU-IN shall give you the last chance to re-assure your
final call to seal with JITSU-IN. Such mind can NOT be managed through
AI or through any other ways with digital technology. Therefore, while
we look into promoting DX for the New Normal era to come, hope that the
significance of JITSU-IN culture to remain in its unique manner.

By the way, I still wonder, while JITSU-IN seal is mandated for vehicle
registration, a life-time-event of marriage registration, not JITSU-IN
but MI-TOH-MEH-IN shall suffice. How come?


<<Topics of Government>>

(1)IoT Security Safety Framework (IoT-SSF) Formulated

(2)The 1st adoption of “Asia Digital Transformation(ADX) projects”
under the FY2019 Supplementary Budget

<<Topics of Industries>>

(1)NEC supports INTERPOL's virtual cybercrime investigation training
(Oct. 30, 2020)

(2)Hitachi Named a Leader in 2020 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Industrial
IoT Platforms

(3)Hitachi Announces Lumada Alliance Program to Drive Economic, Social,
Environmental and Quality of Life Innovation

(4)Fujitsu Rolls Out New Online Medical Solution to Drive Digital
Transformation in Hospitals and Clinics

(5)Japanese Research Group Performs Largest Ever Meteorological
Calculation on Supercomputer Fugaku