Two In Ten (17%) Canadians Report Being a Victim
Of Fraud Or Credit Card Theft

Three In Ten (27%) Have Changed Their Spending Habits Over Concerns About Fraud And Theft; Nearly Half (44%) Believe Banks And Businesses Not Doing Enough To Prevent Fraud And Identity Theft

Toronto, ON - In light of recent concerns regarding the incidence of fraud and debit/credit card theft in Canada, two in ten (17%) Canadian adults report that they themselves have been personally affected by debit/credit card fraud or theft. While conventional wisdom has been that older Canadians might be more likely to fall victim to fraudulent scams or deceitful operations, it is middle-aged Canadians, aged 35 to 54, who report the highest incidence rate (19%), while 16% of younger Canadians, aged 18 to 34, and 14% of older Canadians, aged 55 and above, have been personally affected by credit or debit card fraud or theft.

As a result of the recent media attention paid to identity theft and fraudulent activities, three in ten (27%) Canadians say that they have changed their spending habits or the use of their credit or debits cards as a result of concerns over fraud and theft. In fact, nearly half (44%) of Canadians believe that banks and businesses are not doing enough to protect the personal information that they collect from their customers, or to prevent fraud and identity theft, while half (48%) in fact do believe that banks and business are doing enough in this regard.

Further, an overwhelming majority (90%) believe that if their debit or credit card has been used unlawfully, or if they have been a victim of fraud, the bank or business involved should be required to give the details of where and how the crime occurred. Conversely, just 9% say that banks and businesses should not be obliged to inform Canadians of these details. Additionally, Canadians disproportionately believe (83%) that banks and businesses `should be required to tell customers if their personal information is lost or stolen, regardless of risk of theft or fraud', while 15% of Canadians believe that should not be required `so as to prevent unnecessary alarm'.

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted exclusively for CanWest News Service and Global Television from June 19 to June 21, 2007. For the survey, a representative randomly selected sample of 1002 adults was interviewed by telephone. With a sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to within 177 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the entire adult population been polled. The margin of error will be larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were weighted to ensure that the sample's regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data.

Two In Ten (17%) Report Being A Victim Of Credit Or Debit Card Fraud Or Theft...

Two in ten (17%) Canadians report having been personally affected by debit card or credit card fraud or theft. However, not all Canadians have been affected to the same degree:

  • Nearly one quarter (21%) of Ontarians have been personally affected by this type of occurrence, while just 3% of those in Saskatchewan and Manitoba report having been affected by fraud or theft of this type. Similarly, just 7% of Atlantic Canadians report having been a victim of fraud or theft of their credit or debit card information.
  • Middle-aged Canadians, aged 35 to 54, report the highest incidence rate (19%) of credit or debit card fraud or theft, while 16% of younger Canadians, aged 18 to 34, and 14% of older Canadians, aged 55 and above, have been personally affected by credit or debit card fraud or theft.
  • This type of event has also affected more urban Canadians (17%) than rural Canadians (13%).

Three In Ten (27%) Have Changed Their Spending Habits...

In light of recent concerns over fraud and theft, three in ten (27%) Canadians report that they have changed their spending habits; however, the vast majority (72%) have not changed their spending habits due to fear of fraud or theft.

  • Albertans and residents of Manitoba and Saskatchewan are the most likely to have changed their spending habits (31%), while Atlantic Canadians are the least likely (20%).
  • Three in ten (30%) middle-aged Canadians, 35 to 54, indicate that they have changed their spending habits, while one quarter (23%) of younger Canadians, aged 18 to 34, have changed their habits. Older Canadians, aged 55 and up, fall in between (28%).
  • University graduate are much more likely (32%) than those with less formal education to report that they have changed their spending habits, with one quarter of Canadians with a high school diploma (24%) or some post-secondary education (26%), and just two in ten (20%) individuals without a high school diploma indicating that they have changed their habits.

Canadians Split On Whether Banks And Business Are Doing Enough To Prevent Fraud And Identity Theft...

One half (48%) of Canadians believe that banks and businesses are doing enough to protect the personal information they collect from customers, and to prevent fraud and identity theft. However, a similar proportion (44%) believes that banks and business are in fact not doing enough in this regard.

  • A majority of Canadians living in Alberta (54%), Atlantic Canada (53%), and Saskatchewan/Manitoba (52%) believe that banks and businesses are doing enough.
  • More British Columbians believe that banks and businesses are not doing enough (44%) than are doing enough (42%), and Ontarians are in the same boat, with 48% believing that banks and businesses are not doing enough and 47% believing that they are in fact doing enough.
  • Six in ten (58%) younger Canadians, aged 18 to 34, believe that banks and businesses are doing enough to prevent fraud and identity theft, while a minority of middle-aged Canadians (46%) and older Canadians (43%) believe that they are doing enough.
  • Two thirds (65%) of individuals without a high school diploma believe that these institutions are doing enough, while just 44% of those with a university degree believe this to be the case.

For more Information on this news release, please contact:
John Wright
Senior Vice President
Ipsos Reid
Public Affairs
(416) 324-2902
John.Wright@ipsos-reid.com

About Ipsos Reid
Ipsos Reid is Canada's market intelligence leader, the country's leading provider of public opinion research, and research partner for loyalty and forecasting and modelling insights. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos Reid employs more than 600 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in the country, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and online panels. Ipsos Reid's marketing research and public affairs practices offer the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada, all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, Ipsos Reid offers syndicated information or custom solutions across key sectors of the Canadian economy, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, automotive, retail, and technology & telecommunications. Ipsos Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group.

To learn more, please visit www.ipsos.ca.

Ipsos
Ipsos is a leading global survey-based market research company, owned and managed by research professionals. Ipsos helps interpret, simulate, and anticipate the needs and responses of consumers, customers, and citizens around the world.

Member companies assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media. They measure public opinion around the globe.

Ipsos member companies offer expertise in advertising, customer loyalty, marketing, media, and public affairs research, as well as forecasting, modeling, and consulting. Ipsos has a full line of custom, syndicated, omnibus, panel, and online research products and services, guided by industry experts and bolstered by advanced analytics and methodologies. The company was founded in 1975 and has been publicly traded since 1999. In 2006, Ipsos generated global revenues of 857.1 million euros ($1.1 billion USD).

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