A person browses an e-commerce site on a computer in a photo illustration in Toronto, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. Statistics Canada says Canadians have been spending more time and money online since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Giordano Ciampini

A person browses an e-commerce site on a computer in a photo illustration in Toronto, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. Statistics Canada says Canadians have been spending more time and money online since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Giordano Ciampini

Canadians spend more money and time online during COVID pandemic: StatCan

The agency found in a survey conducted last month that 44 per cent of Canadians had spent more money online

Statistics Canada says Canadians have been spending more time and money online since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The agency found in a survey conducted last month that 44 per cent of Canadians had spent more money online on technology including computers, laptops and tablets, and 42 per cent spent more on video streaming services.

The survey found that 34 of Canadians also spent more on their home and mobile internet connections to maximize the use of this technology.

Analyst Christopher Collins said the survey is trying to capture the social impacts of the pandemic.

He said Canadians have spent more time on social media, messaging services and online video platforms since March.

The agency found that overall 41 per cent of Canadians spent more time on social media and messaging services but the percentage differs among age groups.

“The younger the age group, the greater proportion they reported in the increase in usage,” Collins said.

Canadians also faced cybersecurity worries while spending more time online. The agency found 42 per cent of Canadians said they had experienced at least one type of cybersecurity incident since the beginning of the pandemic, including phishing attacks, malware attacks, fraud attempts and hacked accounts. The agency defines phishing attacks as a specific type of spam targeting individuals with the intent of defrauding them.

Among those reporting experiencing cybersecurity incidents, 36 per cent experienced a loss as a result of the incident. Among those who experienced a loss, 87 per cent reported time loss, 13 per cent reported a loss of data and 13 per cent experienced a financial loss.

The survey also found that 34 per cent of Canadians say they’ve received phishing attacks and 14 per cent reported at least one attack related to COVID-19 test results, a potential cure for the virus, or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.

A Statistics Canada survey from 2018 found that 48 per cent of respondents had received a fraudulent message, including phishing attempts, over the previous year.

“I would like to stress that the results from these are not exactly comparable,” Collins says. “(That’s) not only because of the wording difference, but also for the (difference in) duration in which respondents could have experienced an incident.”

The new survey found that younger Canadians increased certain precautions online. It found that 75 per cent of those aged 15 to 34 reported increasing or maintaining their use of multi-factor authentication, and 47 per cent maintained or increased their purchases of new or additional security software. Only 28 per cent of seniors did.

Many Canadians have found themselves helping others navigate new technology during the pandemic. The survey found that younger Canadians are most likely to provide assistance to others, with almost two-thirds of those aged 15 and 49 helping someone with digital technologies.

About 12 per cent of Canadians helped young children under the age of 11 navigate digital technologies, while 23 per cent helped someone over of 65.

ALSO READ: You can now buy Girl Guide cookies online for $5 a box

———

This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

Maan Alhmidi, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

CoronavirusInternet and Telecom

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the chief medical officer of health, receive flu shot. Photo via Government of Alberta
COVID-19: One more death in central zone

Ponoka County on province’s watchlist

Many rural municipalities were concerned about a proposed reduction to their industrial revenues, but Alberta’s Municipal Affairs minister has come up with an alternative solution. (Photo contributed)
Province and rural municipalities agree on a plan to support Alberta’s energy industry

Creating new wells or pipelines would result in a three year ‘tax holiday’

East Central Express also offers wedding or event shuttle services and tours of the Rocky Mountains. Photo courtesy of East Central Express.
On-demand bus service will now stop in Lacombe

As the winter months arrive, Rob Duncan expects demand for his bus and taxi services to grow

The influenza vaccine will be available at no cost starting Monday in Alberta. “The more that we can avoid influenza-related tests, emergency visits and hospitalizations, the stronger our system will be to support those with COVID-19 and all other health needs," says Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province's chief medical officer of health. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Hinshaw urges Albertans to get flu shot as COVID cases jump by 332

Alberta’s central zone now has 132 active COVID-19 cases

A new biorefinery that will turn organic waste into natural energy was announced in Lacombe on Oct. 15. From left to right: Steve MacDonald, CEO of Emissions Reduction Alberta, Grant Creasey, Mayor of the City of Lacombe, Ron Orr, MLA for Lacombe-Ponoka, Jason Nixon, Minister of Environment and Parks and Chris Thrall, President and CEO of BioRefinex Canada Inc. (Photo Courtesey of The City of Lacombe)
Lacombe to become world’s first site for a new type of clean energy facility

A biorefinery will be built in 2021 creating temporary and full-time jobs, the province announced.

In this photo provided by Shannon Kiss, smoke from the CalWood Fire billows, Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020, as seen from Gunbarrel, Colo. (Shannon Kiss via AP)
‘First guys out:’ Western Canadian air tanker fleet busy despite drop in wildfires

CEO believes wildfires have become more dangerous in recent years as people live closer to where they start

A passer-by walks past a COVID-19 testing clinic in Montreal, Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canada ‘yet to see’ deaths due to recent COVID surge as cases hit 200,000

Much of the increase in case numbers can be attributed to Ontario and Quebec

robbery
UPDATE: Suspect identified in early morning shooting

Rimbey RCMP had responded to a complaint of an armed robbery at the Bluffton City General Store

Executive Director of Agape Kate Halas (left) receives $1000 from Sgt. Eric Christensen (right) on behalf of Agape. Photo/ Shaela Dansereau.
Former Wetaskiwin Peace Officer wins provincial award; gives back to Wetaskiwin community

Eric Christensen has won the Alberta Association of Community Peace Officers Award of Excellence.

Agriculture Minister Devin Dreeshen (Alberta government photo)
Big boost for Alberta college agriculture research

The $2-million agreement to benefit Lethbridge College’s applied research team

Grant and Barbara Howse, in quarantine in Invermere. Mike Turner photo
Denied entry into U.S., Canadian couple still forced to quarantine for 2 weeks

The rules around crossing the U.S. border led to a bizarre situation for an Invermere couple

Employee Sophia Lovink shows off a bag of merchandise in Toronto on Thursday, June 11, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Canada gets C-average grade on 2nd year of cannabis legalization

Cannabis Council of Canada releases report card on federal government and legalization

Canadian and American flags fly near the Ambassador Bridge at the Canada-USA border crossing in Windsor, Ont. on Saturday, March 21, 2020. Restrictions on non-essential travel between Canada and the United States are being extended until at least Nov. 21. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Rob Gurdebeke
Non-essential travel restrictions at Canada-U.S. border extended to at least Nov. 21

The restrictions do not apply to those providing essential services in either country

(The Canadian Perss)
Banff wolves have lower survival rate due to hunting, trapping outside park boundary

Researchers looked at 72 radio-collared wolves in the national park from 1987 to August 2019

Most Read