Moroccans are ranked 4th in the world for “borrowing” or “stealing” their neighbours’ WiFi connection according to a study. Nevertheless, the champions of this practice are essentially Europeans.
Moroccans and Swiss occupy 4th place in the ranking of countries that use their neighbors’ WiFi network with a positive response rate of 9% of the population, according to a study conducted by the Global Consumer Survey of the German statistics platform Statista .
Morocco is the only African country on the list and this could also be explained by the very high rate of internet penetration in the country. In 2010, while the average internet penetration rate was only 9.3% on the African continent, Morocco had 52% of its population classified as internet users.
In 2020, the share of the population using the internet in Africa was the highest, still in Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia and South Africa, all these countries acting as exceptions despite notable progress for the other countries of the continent .
The Statista study was conducted among adults between 2021 and 2022 in several countries and had between 1,000 and 7,000 respondents. It showed that the main users of neighbors’ WiFi were Europeans, with the Dutch and Belgians in the lead, followed by Mexicans who reach 14%, for the top three.
For some of the respondents, this phenomenon is explained by colocation and rental, where it is the owner who pays for internet access or one of the co-tenants who has signed the service contract with the internet operator.
For others, it’s about sharing WiFi with neighbors or even using their internet connection without their knowledge. 16% in Belgium and the Netherlands admit to using the Internet of a third party (neighbor or owner) at home.
“This is more than double the share measured in neighboring countries, France and Germany, where respectively 6% and 7% of Internet users admit to breaking into a wireless network located nearby”notes Statista.
The same source stresses that “the reasons for these discrepancies are not completely clear from the only reading of the survey data”.
And to add that depending on the country, intrusion into an encrypted WiFi network may or may not be considered a criminal offence.
The case of the Netherlands is interesting to note since the country does not consider WiFi connection theft to be an offence, which is not the case in France for example.
#Internet : it seems relatively common to “borrow” the connection #Wireless neighbors in #Belgium and in the Netherlands. According to a survey, this practice concerns 16% of Belgian and Dutch Internet users – more than double the rate measured in France and Germany.
— Statista France (@Statista_FR) August 5, 2022
“We note that it is overall Europeans who are the most fond of this practice, while the United States and China show the lowest rates of Internet users using the WiFi of neighbors (respectively 3% and 2%)”says the German company.