TELUS
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TELUS

February 24, 2015 10:10 ET

TELUS and Public Safety Canada Come Together to Help Canadians Protect Personal Information on Their Mobile Devices

The #BeAppSafe campaign encourages Canadians to protect themselves by safely managing their mobile applications

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb. 24, 2015) - Instances of cybercrime among Canadian smartphone users have grown exponentially in recent years, doubling from 16 per cent in 2012 to 32 per cent in 2013(1). In a joint effort to thwart cybercrime and protect Canadians, TELUS and Public Safety Canada have launched the #BeAppSafe campaign to inform, educate and inspire action among Canadians to secure the personal information they store on their mobile devices.

"Public Safety Canada is dedicated to tackling cyber threats through our awareness initiative, Get Cyber Safe," said the Honourable Steven Blaney, Canada's Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness. "We're pleased to collaborate with TELUS on the #BeAppSafe campaign to amplify our efforts and encourage Canadians to take steps to better protect themselves and their families."

Canadians' personal and professional lives are increasingly dependent on their smartphones. In fact, 54 per cent of Canadians say they value the information on their smartphone more than the device itself(2). Increasingly, people use their mobile phones for services and experiences like online banking, fitness tracking, social platforms and gaming, yet more than half of Canadians are unaware that apps like these can track information such as their physical location(3).

TELUS and Public Safety Canada want Canadians to take control of the information their apps have access to in order to help reduce the risk of cyber criminals accessing personal data, misusing photos, spamming friends or family, tracking their location, or even stealing their identity.

"At TELUS, we understand how critically important apps are to the mobile experience. They can be incredibly useful and entertaining, but they may also open users up to data insecurity or theft," said Michael Sangster, vice-president, Federal Government Relations, TELUS. "Through our work with Public Safety Canada and TELUS WISE we are committed to educating Canadians and their families about Internet and smartphone safety. Together we can make a significant impact by reaching out to the 28 million(4) Canadians who rely on their mobile devices every day."

TELUS WISE (Wise Internet and Smartphone Education) is the first program of its kind in Canada to focus on providing free Internet and smartphone safety education for Canadians and their families. Since its inception in 2013, TELUS has educated more than 500,000 Canadians on how to stay safe online through TELUS WISE. Get Cyber Safe is Public Safety Canada's national awareness campaign created to raise awareness about Internet security and the simple steps Canadians can take to protect themselves online.

The #BeAppSafe campaign is an extension of the ongoing work both Public Safety Canada and TELUS have already undertaken. Together they have developed #BeAppSafe resources to equip Canadians with the tools they need to effectively manage the app settings on their mobile devices. A series of practical and easy tips, such as turning off tracking apps, setting strong passwords and staying on top of permissions and privacy, is available at www.telus.com/wise.

Canadians are encouraged to take part in the campaign and join the conversation on Twitter with @TELUS and @GetCyberSafe using the hashtag #BeAppSafe.

About TELUS

TELUS (TSX:T)(NYSE:TU) is Canada's fastest-growing national telecommunications company, with $12 billion of annual revenue and 13.7 million customer connections, including 8.1 million wireless subscribers, 3.2 million wireline network access lines, 1.5 million Internet subscribers and 916,000 TELUS TV customers. TELUS provides a wide range of communications products and services, including wireless, data, Internet protocol (IP), voice, television, entertainment and video, and is Canada's largest healthcare IT provider.

In support of our philosophy to give where we live, TELUS, our team members and retirees have contributed more than $396 million to charitable and not-for-profit organizations and volunteered and more than 6 million hours of service to local communities since 2000. Created in 2005 by Executive Chairman Darren Entwistle, TELUS' 11 community boards across Canada have led the company's support of grassroots charities and will have contributed $47 million in support of 3,700 local charities organizations by the end of 2014, enriching the lives of more than two million Canadian children and youth. TELUS was honoured to be named the most outstanding philanthropic corporation globally for 2010 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, becoming the first Canadian company to receive this prestigious international recognition.

For more information about TELUS, please visit telus.com.

About Public Safety Canada

Public Safety Canada was created in 2003 to ensure coordination across all federal departments and agencies responsible for national security and the safety of Canadians.

Our mandate is to keep Canadians safe from a range of risks such as natural disasters, crime and terrorism.

References

(1) Symantec. (2013, October 1). 2013 Norton Report

(2) Norton Canadian Norton Cyber Survey, September 2014

(3) Canadian Wireless telecommunications Association, Canadians send 71.5 billion text messages in first nine months of 2012, Blogpost, January 2013

(4) Symantec Mobile App Security Study, October 2014

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