How much time do you spend online each month? For most Canadians, the pandemic has increased how much time we’re spending on our devices. For all that time online, it’s easy to forget that there are risks, and most of us aren’t protected from common threats including hacking, cyber scams, identity theft, and credit card fraud.
Research by Cybersecure Policy Exchange at Ryerson University found that an incredible 57 percent of Canadians surveyed reported being victims of cybercrime. In 2020, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre reported that Canadians had collectively lost $104 million to fraud, and increasingly those threats are online.
In fact, these threats are so common that the Canadian government issued a warning last June detailing the significant importance of cybersecurity.
There have also been growing signs that cyberattacks are becoming much more sophisticated and commonplace. Ransomware alone has become a multibillion-dollar threat around the world. And there is a risk that some cyberthreats and viruses can’t be easily removed. In some types of cyberattacks, personal information or files could be irretrievable on an infected device.
To help Canadians protect themselves, Telus launched a national online security suite with NortonLifeLock to help Canadians protect their devices, online privacy, and personal information.
Telus Online Security Powered by NortonLifeLock offers a number of features, including Device Security, Password Manager, Secure VPN, Full Service Identity Restoration, Identity Theft Reimbursement Coverage, Dark Web Monitoring, and more. *
As cybercrime has increased by over 30% since the start of the pandemic, it’s more important than ever to know how to spot online threats. Here are some tips:
- Watch out for online scams and fake charities
Criminals have been busy during the COVID-19 pandemic. Preying on people’s willingness to help others, these scammers reach out through social media, phone calls, or emails to request money for charities that don’t exist.
Often, these fraudsters will create fake websites that mimic those of existing, reputable charities. Others will use names that sound uncannily like real charities.
- Connect safely through video chats
Many Canadians now rely on video conferencing for everything from virtual doctor visits to game nights with friends. Don’t expect this boom in video conferencing to end just because regional economies are starting to reopen.
To ensure conversations stay between you and the people you are speaking with, be sure to check to see if your video conference service uses encrypted video, which will ensure prying eyes and ears can’t access your conversations.
- Watch out for public Wi-Fi
Public Wi-Fi is notoriously insecure. Cybersnoops can potentially view the websites you visit, capture the passwords you enter while logging into banking or credit card online portals, and even intercept emails you send.
To help stay safe, never log onto your banking or credit card sites while using public Wi-Fi. Any time you do use public Wi-Fi, make sure to use a virtual private network, or VPN, which encrypts the data you send and receive from being snooped on.
Telus Online Security offers protection packages starting at $10 per month. The service is available for all Canadians, regardless of your phone carrier.
For more details about Telus Online Security by NortonLifeLock, visit telus.com.
No one can prevent all cybercrime or identity theft.
* Some features not yet available to residents of Quebec
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