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To tackle cheating, Algeria suspends internet services during school exams

23 June 2018

The Algerian government will shut down the Internet at certain times of the day over the next week as the nation's high school-age kids take their exams to prevent cheating, officials announced.

Nobody will be able to get online - via their mobile phone, tablet or computer for an hour after the start of each high school diploma exam to stop any leaks. This restriction will continue till June 25. Benghabrit reportedly said they are "not comfortable" with their choice to shut down all internet service, but that they "should not passively stand in front of such a possible leak".

More than 700,000 students will sit the high school exams this week.

The move was implemented after complaints of widespread cheating in 2016, when exam questions were leaked to social media.

The internet for mobile and fixed line will be turned off nationwide during the exams. Ethiopia undertook a similar measures a year ago after activists published the university entrance exam online in 2016.

Last year, the educational authorities asked the internet service providers to stop the access to social media, but such measures were not enough.

The country has installed surveillance cameras and mobile jamming devices at the printing presses that publish the exam, Benghabrit said, in an effort to keep the exam under secret till it hits students' desks.

The decision to disconnect the Internet was made after 2016 exam questions appeared on the network during the exams and even before, writes the BBC.

To tackle cheating, Algeria suspends internet services during school exams