Jul 112013
 

Akiko Fujita reports:

You may want to think twice the next time you skip over those privacy settings online.

Government ministries in Japan are playing damage control after accidentally leaking internal emails on Google Groups, unaware that the site’s default settings would make their private conversations public.

A spokesman with the Ministry of Environment tells ABC News their Google account was initially set up to share internal information about an international treaty on mercury trade. The forum was set up in January to allow treaty negotiators at the United Nations in Geneva to communicate with ministry staff in Tokyo. The exchange, which involved 66 emails, ranged from discussions about media coverage on the negotiations to summaries of bilateral talks with Switzerland and Norway. No classified information was shared, the ministry said.

Group members thought their online conversation was limited to just 25 people until they got a call from the Yomiuri newspaper this week saying contents of the forum had been available publicly for seven months.

Read more on ABC.

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