Canadians' Confidence in Data Privacy: A Decline Amidst Digital Evolution
In today's digitally driven world, data privacy has emerged as a pivotal concern for consumers. A recent survey by Interac Corp. has revealed a significant shift in Canadian perspectives. The survey was conducted between January 2 and January 4, 2024 and the findings were published on the Interac. website on January 23, 2024.
Its findings reveal a striking decline in confidence among Canadians regarding the privacy and security of their personal data.
The Heart of the Matter
The survey's results show that close to 77% of Canadians feel that their personal data is more exposed than ever. This growing unease is coupled with a lack of confidence in safeguarding online personal information, with only 40% feeling confident in their ability to protect it. Moreover, a substantial 80% of respondents desire greater control over how their online information is shared.
The complexity of data consent procedures adds to the problem. Colette Stewart, Managing Counsel and Enterprise Privacy Lead at Interac, emphasized the need for simplification in the data sharing consent process saying the following:
Consumers are increasingly concerned about the privacy and security of their personal data and are dissatisfied with the status quo [...]. Our survey results underscore the opportunity to build Canadians’ confidence by simplifying the consent process for when, where, and how frequently they share their data – and subsequently the role organizations play in meeting these needs and expectations.
Surprisingly, 59% of Canadians struggle to understand terms and conditions, and 65% find the language describing data usage vague.
Open Banking and Consumer Trust
With the Federal government gearing up to introduce open banking legislation, Canadians show optimism about gaining more control over their financial data. About 65% welcome this new era of consumer-driven banking, expecting it to offer secure data access and sharing, and protection against risky practices like screen scraping.
Technological Concerns and Trust Issues
Connected technologies, from smart home devices to AI chatbots, increase privacy concerns. Nearly 48% of Canadians are highly concerned about how these technologies use their personal information. Additionally, trust is decreasing, with 66% believing that companies share their data without consent, and 71% feeling current protection measures are insufficient.
The Issue of Control and Continuous Consent
The frequency of requests for personal information, whether online or in-store, is another concern. About 59% of Canadians are uncomfortable with the frequency of these requests, leading to a sense of losing control over personal data. Furthermore, 75% expect the ability to provide ongoing consent for data use, highlighting the need for more user-friendly consent mechanisms.
This survey by Interac unveils a critical juncture in data privacy for Canadians. As we move forward in the digital age, the demand for transparency, control, and simplified consent processes is clear. Both businesses and policymakers must heed these concerns to foster an environment where trust in data privacy can be rebuilt and sustained.
How can Clym help?
Clym stands as a robust solution for businesses and individuals navigating the complexities of data privacy and protection. For businesses, it offers a comprehensive suite of tools that streamline compliance with various data privacy regulations like Law 25, PIPA Alberta, PIPA British Columbia GDPR, CCPA, and others, ensuring that they manage user data responsibly and transparently.
This not only aids in legal compliance but also fortifies customer trust. For individuals, Clym serves as a guardian of their personal information, providing clear options for consent management and making it easier to understand how their data is used. By empowering users with knowledge and control over their data, Clym reinforces the bridge of trust between consumers and businesses, fostering a more transparent and secure digital ecosystem.