Muscat: A survey has been launched to gauge the access to Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in Oman and measure the extent to which it has been put to use by the households and individuals in Oman, by the Information Technology Authority (ITA) in cooperation with the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI), Oman.
The survey, which is the second edition, targets 6,100 randomly selected households, throughout the 11 governorates of the Sultanate, in an attempt to ensure a diversity of data through the reach to both urban and rural Omani households and the survey related activities will continue until September 2016.
“The 1st edition of this survey conducted in 2013 provided valuable set of ICT indicators which made significant contribution in the planning and execution of ICT related policies and projects. These comprehensive results have been shared with several public and private organizations in order to bring about scientific evidence of the needs of families and individuals and the development of electronic services,” Dr Salim bin Sultan Al Ruzaiqi, CEO of ITA, said.
“The ICT indicators obtained from these surveys are shared with international organizations' such as the United Nations and the international telecommunication Union, which has helped to highlight the efforts and progress made in the field of ICT in the Sultanate, and improve the its ranking in the ICT-related global reports” he added.
Dr Ruzaiqi further requested all citizens and residents to cooperate with the surveyors by providing them with accurate information during the survey.
Measuring such data precisely through a nation-wide research assists key decision makers and strategic planners to formulate initiatives related to ICT in households and individuals and measure the extent to which digital divide in the Sultanate has been addressed effectively.
“The ICT survey reflects the rapid changes and advancement in ICT adoption as the survey measures a number of indicators about the use and access to the Internet, computers and smart phones, the prevalence and usage of social media, the measurements and actions taken to protect children from Cyber risks, the level of interaction and uptake of the available eServices and the extent of reliance on ecommerce in Oman,” Shariffa Bint Mohammed AlMaskary, Director of International Relations and Information at ITA, said.
The surveyors will be using smart devices, such as PDAs, tablets and laptops to collect the required information that will be stored and processed in a fully secured environment. ITA and NCSI assures everyone participants of this survey that it follows the National Statistical Law and that collected information will be treated as strictly confidential and will only be used for the purpose of the study.