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

Right, Ambassador of Hungary to Canada, Her Excellency Dr. Maria Vass-Salazar, lays a wreath at St. Michael’s RC Cemetery in Manfred, Ponoka County on Oct. 25. (Emily Jaycox/Bashaw Star)
Wreath laying ceremony held in Manfred

Ceremony marks 64th anniversary of Hungarian revolution, honours settlers

Alberta has 3,651 active cases of COVID-19. (File photo)
432 new COVID cases sets another record Friday

Central zone holds steady at 126 active cases

"We are looking seriously at the spread and determining what our next steps should be," says Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, as the daily number of COVID-19 cases continues to climb.
427 new COVID cases is highest in Alberta ever

Central zone has 126 active cases of COVID-19

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson, B.C. NDP leader John Horgan and B.C. Greens leader Sonia Furstenau. (Black Press Media)
VIDEO: One day until B.C. voters go to the polls in snap election defined by pandemic

NDP Leader John Horgan’s decision to call an election comes more than a year ahead of schedule and during a pandemic

Pumpkins for the 46th Annual WDACS Pumpkin Ball on display at Vision Credit Union Wetaskiwin. Shaela Dansereau/ Pipestone Flyer.
46th Annual Pumpkin Ball held virtually this year

This year the pumpkins were sold over a six-day online auction.

Comedic actor Seth Rogen, right, and business partner Evan Goldberg pose in this undated handout photo. When actor Seth Rogen was growing up and smoking cannabis in Vancouver, he recalls there was a constant cloud of shame around the substance that still lingers. Rogen is determined to change that. (Maarten de Boer ohoto)
Seth Rogen talks about fighting cannabis stigma, why pot should be as accepted as beer

‘I smoke weed all day and every day and have for 20 years’

Leader of the Opposition Erin O’Toole rises during Question Period in the House of Commons Thursday October 22, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
O’Toole tells Alberta UCP AGM Liberals were ‘late and confused’ on COVID response

He says Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has taken charge and not waited to make things happen

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney arrives for an announcement at a news conference in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol
Inquiry into oil and gas foes to deliver report next year: Kenney

A lawsuit filed by environmental law firm Ecojustice argues the inquiry is politically motivated

The Canadian border is pictured at the Peace Arch Canada/USA border crossing in Surrey, B.C. Friday, March 20, 2020. More than 4.6 million people have arrived in Canada since the border closed last March and fewer than one-quarter of them were ordered to quarantine while the rest were deemed “essential” and exempted from quarantining. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Majority of international travellers since March deemed ‘essential’, avoid quarantine

As of Oct. 20, 3.5 million travellers had been deemed essential, and another 1.1 million were considered non-essential

This photo provided by Air Force Reserve shows a sky view of Hurricane Epsilon taken by Air Force Reserve hurricane hunter team over the Atlantic Ocean taken Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020.   Epsilon’s maximum sustained winds have dropped slightly as it prepares to sideswipe Bermuda on a path over the Atlantic Ocean.  The National Hurricane Center says it should come close enough Thursday, Oct. 22, evening to merit a tropical storm warning for the island.  (Air Force Reserve via AP)
Hurricane Epsilon expected to remain offshore but will push waves at Atlantic Canada

Epsilon is not expected to have any real impact on land

A voter places her absentee ballot in the ballot box, Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020, at Merrill Auditorium in Portland, Maine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Robert F. Bukaty
American voters living in Canada increasingly being counted in presidential race

The largest number of Canadian-based American voters cast their ballots in New York and California

A composite image of three photographs shows BC NDP Leader John Horgan, left, in Coquitlam, B.C., on Sept. 25, 2020; BC Green Party Leader Sonia Furstenau, centre, in Victoria on Sept. 24, 2020; and BC Liberal Party Leader Andrew Wilkinson Pitt Meadows, B.C., on Sept. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck, Chad Hipolito
British Columbia votes in snap election called during COVID-19 pandemic

NDP Leader John Horgan called the snap election one year before the fixed voting date

Most Read