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New e-safety resources launched for Welsh schools

The resources hope to improve the safety of students on the internet Credit: PA / Arne Dedert

Schools in Wales are to receive two new resources aimed at encouraging safe and responsible internet use for pupils.

The resources, which have been created based on others in use across the UK and globally, will be formally launched later by the Minister for Education and Skills, Huw Lewis AM.

One is a self-assessment tool that allows schools to judge and improve their online safety, while the other is a resource pack for teachers, which aims to help them in teaching their pupils about the importance of responsible online use.

A screenshot of one of the resources - the 360 degree safe tool Credit: UK Safer Internet Centre

These two resources, uniquely produced for Wales, will be available to all schools across Wales to use and hope to help schools improve their e-safety, as well as developing digital literacy skills in their pupils.

There’s no doubt the internet and social technologies offer huge possibilities for learning and research, for communication and collaboration and for limitless creativity. That’s why we recently made a big investment in upgrading the broadband infrastructure for schools in every part of Wales.

Indeed, 86 per cent of schools are now receiving the desired connectivity at the agreed level or better.

However, we must also recognise that there are darker corners of the web which children and young people will encounter from time to time. _ _We’re committed to safeguarding all children and young people across Wales, and this is equally true in the online space.

– Huw Lewis AM, Education Minister

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Work due to start in Wales to introduce superfast internet speeds

Work is due to start in every telephone exchange in Wales by the end of September next year to introduce superfast internet speeds to more villages and towns across the country.

Communities from Aberdaron in Gwynedd to Skenfrith in Monmouthshire are set to benefit from the Superfast Cymru programme. Credit: PA

Communities where work is set to begin before the end of September 2015 as part of the Superfast Cymru programme include Aberdaron in Gwynedd, Capel Curig and Dolgarrog in Conwy, Brechfa in Carmarthenshire and Skenfrith in Monmouthshire.

They will join hundreds of communities across Wales where fast fibre broadband is already live or due to be switched on.

The Superfast Cymru programme is ambitious and challenging, bringing fast fibre broadband across Wales. We should not underestimate the sheer scale of it.

From Aberdaron in Gwynedd to Skenfrith in Monmouthshire communities will have the option of accessing fast fibre broadband. This is a tremendous achievement and excellent news for businesses and households.

By the time the Superfast Cymru programme is completed in Spring 2016 Wales will be one of the most highly connected countries in Europe with 96 per cent of premises able to access faster internet speeds."

– Julie James AM, Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology

One in five Welsh people have never used the internet

Latest figures show that almost one in five Welsh adults have never used the internet - many of those are older people or those living in disadvantaged communities.

This week, events are being held across Wales to encourage people to sign up for free workshops.

'Get Online Week,' aims to encourage people without digital skills to learn how to log on and start using the web in their daily lives.

20% of people in Wales have never used the internet before Credit: PA

Organisers say the 20% of people in Wales who still can't use the web and are missing out on huge opportunities to alter the way they go about their lives such as online shopping, banking,and staying in closer touch with family and friends.

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Wales goes online with launch of new domain name

The new domain names will be launched later today. Credit: PA

From today businesses, communities, organisations and individuals will be able to launch their websites with the new domain name '.wales' or '.cymru'.

The launch follows a three month consultation in December 2012 which showed a backing to introduce an online identity in Wales.

First Minister, Carwyn Jones, and Dame Rosemary Butler AM will host an event to mark the launch of the domain names at the Senedd later today.

The National Eisteddfod, Welsh broadcaster S4C and the National Assembly for Wales are among some of the first organisations to switch to the new domain.

'Fastest UK broadband' offered to Cardiff residents

The fastest broadband in the UK has been made available to some residents in Cardiff - the first time it's been offered to any consumers in Wales.

Fibre was laid and the flats were networked within 3 months. Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Gigabit broadband, which allows HD films to be downloaded in less than 30 seconds, has been made available to residents in Hayes Apartments, which sits above St David's shopping centre in the Welsh capital.

Hyperoptic, the company behind the installation, say millions of pounds will be invested in broadband infrastructure in Cardiff over the next few years.

We are always looking for businesses that will add to the competitiveness and growth of Cardiff. Hyperoptic will be investing £4million in broadband infrastructure in Cardiff over the next five years - supporting our local economy as well as providing a service that is miles ahead of the competition. I strongly advise residents to get behind it, the more demand we can demonstrate the faster the rollout will be.

– Ken Poole, Head of Economic Development, City of Cardiff
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