Algeria shuts down internet to prevent cheating during high school exams
22 June 2018
The whole nation of Algeria went offline on Wednesday for the start of high school exams, the first in a series of internet blackouts to stop the possibility of students cheating.
Mobile and fixed internet connections were cut across the country for a total of two hours, to coincide with the start of two school tests.
Devices with internet access, such as mobile phones and tablets, were banned from Algeria’s more than 2,000 exam centres and metal detectors were set up at the entrance to the centres, education minister Nouria Benghabrit said.
In a further move to prevent questions being leaked, the minister said mobile phone jammers and surveillance cameras had been installed in locations where the exam papers were printed.
Internet services had been cut “in compliance with instructions from the government, aimed at ensuring the high school diploma tests run smoothly,” public operator Algerie Telecom said.
The pre-planned blackouts are scheduled to continue until Monday, to combat cheating among more than 700,000 students.