Expert: Only 12% of PNG Population Using Internet

By: PNG Business News July 11, 2022

Photo credit: Khlobystov Alexey/

Only 12 per cent of Papua New Guinea’s population has access to internet, making it one of the lowest rates in the world, an expert says.

Deloitte PNG director of consulting, Alberto Cimas said this was according to the latest available data on internet users in the country which showed that they did do not have full or continuous internet access.

“In other words, they simply use internet just to check Facebook once in a while, but they count as ‘internet users’ when they shouldn’t,” he said.

“Additionally, according to the latest data, only eight per cent of PNG’s population use social networks.

“We can assume that only a very small percentage use social media continuously or on a daily basis.

“In other words, usage of social media in PNG can be considered irrelevant.

“Also, note that the concept of ‘social media’ is very diverse and covers applications like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat and others.”

Cimas noted that when looking at the data it was understood that cyber-security or fake news in social media did not pose a real threat to the election process in PNG.

“There are other threats like physical threats, fraud and corruption, manipulation of voting or counting and low implementation of the National Identification,” he said.

“Cyber-security and social media can be a threat in countries where most of the population have access to internet, simply because these cyber threats and fake news will reach most of the population.

“We already saw the case of Cambridge Analytica or the manipulation of social media messages in FB and Twitter during the US elections in 2018.” Here are some common cyber threats during elections overseas were:

  • PHISHING: This occurs when an attacker poses as a known sender to gain personal information from you.
    Any information shared can be used to exploit your data for the attacker’s financial or personal gain;
  • SMISHING: Otherwise known as SMS phishing or text phishing, occurs when the attacker contacts you via text messaging.

In some cases, attackers are looking to see which phone numbers respond, meaning that they are active and working numbers.
They may later use knowledge of your working phone number to exploit a more sophisticated attack;

  • VISHING: Vishing or Voice phishing occurs when an attacker contacts you over the phone, posing as someone else.
    Outside of election season, these usually occur when an attacker pretends to an employee from the company you bank with or phone provider asking for personal information; and;
  • SPEAR phishing: Instead of being targeted to a large group of people, spear phishing targets a specific individual.
    This type of message will appear to come from a person that you have a relationship with.

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