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By Ben Hollom
According to new data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), there are more than seven million people in the UK who have never used the Internet, with the elderly and disabled the least likely to have online access.
By contrast, however, there are 43.5 million Britons online, which is a million more when compared to the same period last year, figures showed. Graham Walker, chief executive of digital accessibility charity Go On UK, commented that the increase was good news, but there was still a lot of work to be done. Despite having online access, some 16 million people lack the basic skills to feel confident when utilising the channel, he said.
Of those who have never used the Internet, 4.2 million are women and 2.8 million are men. Disabled people are three times less likely to get online than people without a disability, with 3.7 million disabled adults lacking Internet access, the ONS found. Not surprisingly, the most connected age group is users between 16-and-24-year-olds, with 99% of them using the Internet. At the other end of the spectrum, people over 75-years-old are the least connected; still, 34.3% of them currently have access to the Internet, compared with 23.8% in 2011.
There is also a significant geographical difference, with London having the largest proportion of online connected users (90%), while Northern Ireland has the lowest (79%). On average, 86% of the British population has used the Internet, figures revealed.
May 17, 2013