Two thirds of school-age kids without internet access: UN

internet access
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Two thirds of school-age children worldwide have no internet at home, a UN report found Tuesday, even as pandemic-induced school closures have made online access vital to getting an education.

In all, an estimated 1.3 billion children between the ages of three and 17 do not have internet connections in their homes, said the joint report from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

The report also found that a similar lack of access among youths and young adults, with 63 percent of all 15 to 24-year-olds unconnected at home.

“That so many children and young people have no internet at home is more than a digital gap, it is a digital canyon,” UNICEF chief Henrietta Fore warned in a statement.

Lacking connectivity prevents young people from “competing in the modern economy. It isolates them from the world,” she said.


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Nearly 40% of rural homes globally do not have access to internet: ITU

Urban households around the world have almost twice as much access to the internet than those living in rural areas, according to the United Nation’s International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

According to the ITU, about 72% of households in urban areas globally had access to home internet in 2019, while only 38% of homes in rural areas had the same access. 

Published as part of the ITU’s annual Measuring Digital Development: Facts and figures report, the United Nations agency also said that urban access to the internet was 2.3 times higher than rural access in developing countries.

Urban and rural areas were classified in accordance with each UN member country’s own definition for what they consider to be urban and rural.

By comparison, the urban-rural gap in developed countries was much smaller, with 87% and 81% of urban and rural homes having access to home internet in 2019, respectively.

Meanwhile, connectivity

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Singapore gives non-banks access to e-payment platforms

Eligible non-bank financial institutions in Singapore soon will have direct access to the country’s retail payment platforms, PayNow and FAST, which will enable e-wallet users to make funds transfers between bank accounts and across different e-wallets. Most e-wallets currently can be topped up only via credit or debit cards and funds cannot be transferred between e-wallets. 

To plug this gap, a new API (application programming interface) payment gateway has been developed under guidelines from the Singapore Clearing House Association (SCHA) and Association of Banks in Singapore (ABS), both of which govern FAST and PayNow, respectively. The API is designed to better fit the technology architecture of banks and non-bank financial institutions, according to industry regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). 

FAST, or Fast and Secure Transfers, is an electronic funds transfer service that allows real-time funds transfers, in Singapore dollars, between entities, while PayNow — running on top the FAST

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The frequent curb on Internet access in Manipur has become a means of suppressing freedom of expression in the State

A recent study reveals how periodic curbs on the Internet in Manipur are one in a long line of attempts to suppress freedom of expression in the State

Social and political movements often invite multiple threats to freedom of expression. We know about the curbs imposed on the Kashmir valley; Manipur is another such place. The State faced five Internet shutdowns in the four years between 2015 and 2019: any incident, big or small, has led to a shutdown of mobile Internet telephony. This has become almost as regular an affair as the frequent curfews once imposed on the State.

Over the decades, freedom of expression has been sought to be stifled through various means like diktats on media houses regarding content, ban on local television channels, and even the killing of journalists. Activists, journalists and ordinary people alike are muzzled. The curb on Internet access is one in the

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Xbox Live Bug Let Hackers Access Gamertag Email Addresses

A bug in Xbox Live allowed hackers to find any email associated with a registered gamertag. The site used to report bad behavior in the Xbox online community was hiding a vulnerability that allowed hackers to snag user email addresses.

that last week an anonymous hacker reached out to them claiming to be able to find the email attached to any Xbox gamertag. Motherboard verified the hacker’s claims by sending them two gamertags, one of which was created specifically for this testing. Within seconds the hacker sent back the email addresses these tags were registered with. Normally, these email addresses are supposed to be private. Another anonymous hacker told Motherboard that the bug could be found in the . This page is where players can contact the Microsoft team that monitors Xbox’s online communities.

Despite the apparent threat to customer security, Microsoft’s original response to this security breach was not

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Most NJ students have computer access, but that won’t close divide, advocates say

Parents lined up at schools in Dover, Haledon and Camden last week to pick up computer devices for their children, as New Jersey makes strides to close a digital divide that has strained families and schools during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Distribution of over 200 free Chromebooks in Paterson to help students during the pandemic



About 35,000 students across the state still lack computer devices or internet connections at home, a big improvement from the 231,000 tallied in August, according to a New Jersey Department of Education survey this month.

But while the number is narrowing, it doesn’t give a full picture of remote-learning challenges, say advocates and school leaders.

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“We’re in a good place when it comes to devices,” said Norma Fernandez, deputy superintendent of Jersey City’s schools. “But the

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Accelerating Mini-Grids In Myanmar And Expanding Energy Access To Villagers

Only 50% of households in Myanmar, one of the poorest nations in Southeast Asia, are connected to the public grid. Five years ago, the government set a goal of electrifying 100% of the country by 2030.

With that in mind, in June, Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship, together with Smart Power Myanmar and supported by Chevron with a $250,000 grant, launched a pilot program to work with early and growth stage mini-grid developers expanding access to energy in rural and off-grid communities. 

Called the Mini-Grid Accelerator, the five-month program recently wrapped up with 13 entrepreneurs.

Mini-grids combine generation assets with distribution grids able to supply off-grid power to villages or townships. Typically mini-grids have generation capacity between 10 kW to a few hundred kW, although some larger mini-grids supply power to entire townships in Myanmar. 

For Miller, the program combines two areas of focus—women’s economic empowerment and

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Fisher River Cree Nation gives students free laptops and internet access for online learning

a person in a blue shirt sitting on a desk: Grade 12 student Koby Wilson is one of 230 students in Fisher River Cree Nation who received a laptop and MiFi box for online schooling.

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Grade 12 student Koby Wilson is one of 230 students in Fisher River Cree Nation who received a laptop and MiFi box for online schooling.

Fisher River Cree Nation is making the transition to online learning easier by giving students in the community a free laptop or iPad and internet connection device.

“It’s a great thing… because not every family actually has the money to afford a laptop,” said Grade 12 student Koby Wilson.

Wilson is one of 470 students who attend the two schools in the community about 170 kilometres north of Winnipeg. He works part time at the local restaurant and is a councillor for Fisher River’s junior chief and council. 


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During the first few weeks of the school year, students were given paper homework packages. 

In October, the Fisher River Education Authority received an order of 230 Toshiba laptops which were given to

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Siberian student scales birch tree for internet access as classes move online

STANKEVICHI, Russia (Reuters) – Russian student Alexei Dudoladov has been forced to go to great lengths – or rather great heights – to attend classes online, having to climb a birch tree in his remote Siberian village every time he needs an internet connection.

The 21-year-old, a popular blogger and a student at the Omsk Institute of Water Transport, located 2,225 kilometres (1,383 miles) east of Moscow, has got the authorities’ attention by pleading for better internet coverage from the top of a snow-covered birch tree.

In his plea – viewed 1.9 million times on TikTok and more than 56,000 times on Instagram since last week – Dudoladov tells regional governor Alexander Burkov that his home internet is not strong enough to connect to his online classes and that he has been forced to come up with a creative solution.

“I need to go into the forest 300 metres from

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Remote learning causes challenges for those without internet access

As more school districts move back to remote learning, what has become the norm for many families is a burden for others.

Disappearing students due to lack of internet access during remote learning



“I know I’m not the only one,” said Heather Johnson, a parent of two students in the Greeley-Evans School District.

The district is closing their campus Monday, and Johnson said she is worried about her kids. 

“My girls are both remote learning and my 14-year-old is special needs,” Johnson said.

With the rise in COVID-19 cases across Colorado, Johnson said her financial struggles have followed the same pattern. 

RELATED: These school districts have shifted to remote learning

“I was okay. We were okay,” she said. “We’re able to make our bills and everything, but we ran out of money around July.”

Johnson said the pandemic has cut down on her work. Now,

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