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At ArcGIS 10.2 there is a shapefile issue which results in a crash. The problem has been present since 8.0, however the possibility of encountering the issue has increased by recent changes in support of Shift JIS.
This is caused by a buffer overrun that is most likely to occur when there are large numbers of fields in the dBase file.
A patch is available to fix this issue. Download and install the ArcGIS 10.2 for (Desktop, Engine, Server) Shapefile crash on open Patch.