By Simon Friend
October 17, 2008
This week, a religious student at Bar Ilan University, after being struck with a bout of insomnia, ventured to the halls of residence's computer cluster in the early hours of the morning to discover strictly Orthodox men browsing the internet's more questionable material.
"I was in shock," she recalled. "I passed them and they just continued surfing pornographic sites as if they were watching the news. These are not people that I know; they are too old to be students, and anyone can enter the university, so they simply took advantage of the situation," she said.
The university is aware that many Charedim from the nearby predominantly strictly Orthodox town of Bnei Brak take advantage of the room in order to surf the net, as internet access at home is not usually permitted by rabbis. A Bar Ilan spokesperson told Israeli news website ynet: "In coordination with the union, we reached a decision to decrease the amount of hours the offices are open and we were indeed successful in significantly reducing the phenomenon.
The university administration is planning on assessing additional steps in completely eliminating the entrance of strangers."