2011 Canadians and Privacy Survey

By: Absolute Team | 9/1/2011

A telephone survey of 2000 adults commissioned by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada in order to understand privacy issues and Canadians’ attitudes and concerns about privacy.

Although the aim of the study is to better understand and serve consumers from a government perspective, businesses are wise to take note of customer perceptions when it comes to privacy. As you can see from the data below, consumer seem to feel that businesses are rather ambivalent about consumer privacy.

Some highlights from the study:

  • Most felt that their knowledge of personal privacy rights under the laws protecting their personal information was either poor (36%) or somewhere in neutral territory – neither good nor bad (33%)
  • Higher income earners ($80K+) were the least likely to have said they were doing a very good job protecting their own privacy (13% compared to 20% among those in the $40K-$80K income category and 19% among those earning less)
  • 14% felt businesses were taking their responsibility to protect consumer personal information seriously, while 13% felt this was not the case.
  • 97% felt that organizations found to have contravened a privacy law should be legally bound to improve protections (vs non-binding suggestions and other options). A high proportion also encouraged naming the organization to the public, fining them, and taking them to court.
  • Most Canadians did not feel confident that they had enough information to know how new technologies might affect their personal privacy

Consumers were very concerned about newer technologies, from mobile phones and apps to social networking. The data is very insightful. You can read it in full here.

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