Canada Post publicly admitted Wednesday that they have experienced a privacy breach involving thousands of Ontario’s online cannabis customers
This is just the latest in a string of issues the Ontario Cannabis Store has dealt with in the weeks since Canada legalized recreational cannabis for adult use.
An as of yet unidentified person used Canada Post shipment tracking tool to access the personal information of 4,500 Ontario Cannabis Stores (OCS). Canada Post publicly announced the breach of information Wednesday, only after the OCS had begun alerting customers.
According to the OCS, the information that was accessed included postal codes and the initials of people who signed for packages sent from the store. No other information was leaked.
"Both organizations have been working closely together since that time to investigate and take immediate action," Canada Post said in a statement. "As a result, important fixes have been put in place by both organizations to prevent any further unauthorized access to customer information."
The breach of personal information likely expands beyond OCS customers, though Canada Post has yet to release who has been affected and what kinds of information has been accessed. The OCS say they have "encouraged" Canada Post to notify those affected, stating that all OCS customers who were involved have been contacted.
"To date, Canada Post has not taken action in this regard," the store said in its statement. "Although Canada Post is making its own determination as to whether notification of customers is required in this instance, the OCS has notified all relevant customers."
The leaking of cannabis consumers personal details is particularly concerning for some, as admitting to having smoked marijuana in the past can lead a person to be inadmissible to the United States.
"I wouldn't say I am worried (about this breach) but I am concerned any time my personal information is hacked," said one customer, who was alerted by the OCS that their information had been leaked. "I would prefer you not use my name only because I might like to continue to be admissible to USA."
For those consumers who are concerned about the issue, they're stuck in a tight spot. As of right now, Canada Post is the only courier allowed to ship weed in Ontario, and the OCS the only store allowed to sell it. Shoppers aren't left with many options.
When this information breach is coupled the OCS' inability to fill orders in a timely manner, it's mislabeled product pages, and the Canada Post's labor strikes legal cannabis is not in a good way in Ontario right now.
H/T: The GrowthOp