Why is South Africa the least civilized country on the Internet?

Of the 25 countries surveyed, Microsoft ranked South Africa as the least civilized country online. What criteria are they sorted by?

In early February, Microsoft published a report on the index of civilization on the Internet (DCI). This result was announced by Microsoft on the International Day of Internet Safety. In this list, Microsoft ranks South Africa as the country with the lowest level of Internet civilization.

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South Africa is the country with the lowest Internet civilization index in Microsoft survey. (Image:
Microsoft).

The survey was conducted to understand users' experiences on the 21 risks caused by inappropriate behaviors. The survey participants were teenagers and adults from 25 countries.

Why is South Africa leading the list?

According to Microsoft, the digital civilization index is measured by the feedback of teens and adults about the online experience and the risks coming from the Internet. Specifically, Microsoft lists 21 types of cyber risks, divided into 4 categories related to reputation, behavior, sexual assault and exploitation of personal information.

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According to the survey, the anonymous attacks online bring a lot of mental damage.(Photo: Hornet).

The lower the indicator of a country, the less likely it is that the Internet users in that country are at less risk from the network, or in other words, the users of civilized networks. This is the first time that 3 countries have reached over 80%, of which the highest is South Africa at 83%.

According to a Microsoft report, South African surveyors said that the most common risk online was unwanted contact (53%), fraud (40%), bad treatment (37%) and texting. Bad news (34%). Up to 87% said they had encountered problems at least twice, 95% had suffered from online troubles, and 71% were concerned about the risks coming back.

The most controversial topics online in South Africa are race (56%), politics (41%), religion (38%), sexual orientation (34%) and appearance (32%).

For incidents that are deeply emotional, South African users say that discrimination, smear reputation and online harassment are the biggest risks.

In previous Microsoft reports, South Africa always ranked low. In 2018, the country ranked last among 14 countries surveyed. In 2019, South Africa is ranked 21/22 countries.

Many online behavior issues in South Africa

This is not the first report to show online problems in South Africa. In 2019, market research firm YouGov's report showed that 24% of South Africa's internet users have admitted being scammed online. Up to 28% of people have ever had unauthorized access to their accounts, and 53% have ever received phishing phishing emails.

Cyberbullying is another problem. In 2015, market analysis firm YouGove found that South Africa was among the four countries with the highest cyberbullying rates in the world. The survey found that one in five adolescents in South Africa has been bullied, and 84% know the bullying victim online.

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Miss South Africa Zozibini Tunzi has also been a victim of cyber bullying.

This number remains unchanged after many years. In 2019, Ipsos' annual online bullying report showed that 25% of South African parents admitted their children were victims. The number of parents who know a victim of bullying is up to 54%, much higher than the average of 33% through a survey of 28 countries.

The majority of parents (66%) consider social networks to be the preferred environment for bullying. The bully is mostly a classmate (67%) or relative (15%) of the victim.

South Africa has enacted the Anti-Harassment Act, which includes provisions for online harassment. If brought to court and the verdict is harassed, the victim will be entitled to a protection from the court. If the perpetrator continues to harass, he may be arrested.

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South African journalist Redi Tlhabi once declared war on cyber bullies.(Photo: Madelene Cronjé).

Disparaging, cyber attacks are not just aimed at teenagers. In 2019, when the beautiful South African Zozibini Tunzi was selected to take the Miss Universe contest, she received a lot of criticism from the country's social networking accounts. Veteran journalist Redi Tlhabi is also a victim of troll accounts.

However, in these cases the victims were protected. Tunzi advocates quickly point out the flaws in the comments made by the disdain, even attacking these accounts. Ms Tlhabi, meanwhile, thinks she is ready to respond to all her personal and family attacks.

With many issues of online behavior, it's not surprising that South Africa for the third time in a row is a "hot spot" about uncivilized in the Microsoft report.

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