Many hands choosing cryptocurrency coins from box labeled ICO

Canadians still haven’t fully understood the implications of poor cybersecurity habits, according to survey results published Tuesday by the Toronto-based Canadian Bankers Association (CBA).

The three surveys, conducted in partnership with AI-powered lifestyle app Carrot Rewards, found that a majority of respondents “lacked basic knowledge of their vulnerabilities when using devices connected to the Internet of Things,” such as smart TVs, gaming systems and smart thermostats. At the same time, only 75% of Canadians saw the importance of having unique passwords for every digital banking access point.

“The realities of a connected world mean that our vulnerability to cyberthreats isn’t limited to our systems and technology,” Neil Parmenter, president and CEO of the CBA, says in a statement. “Canadians are gaining a better appreciation of their own role in enhancing cybersecurity. We’re committed to advancing their understanding by promoting best practices to avoid the risks associated with their connected devices and the steps they can take to mitigate against them.”

Digital literacy and a cautious attitude are also important guards against Canadians’ vulnerability to cryptocurrency-related scams, says Canada’s Competition Bureau.

The Competition Bureau is warning against scams masquerading as investment opportunities in new forms of cryptocurrency. Much of the time, these fraudulent crypto offerings are advertised on social media and promise high returns, or a chance to strike it rich even if you “missed out” on the bitcoin rush at the end of 2017.

The Competition Bureau recommends anyone considering an investment in an initial coin offering or any cryptocurrency-related product keep an air of skepticism about them, do a thorough investigation by checking with a provincial or territorial securities regulator, and run the idea by a financial advisor before wiring funds.