“Why has the Canadian government given up on protecting our privacy?” — By: Kate Lucoff

Through countless social media posts, Canadians have opened up themselves to the tracking techniques implemented by Internet advertising companies. Nevertheless, the public appears to be more concerned with the issues of privacy then the government itself. The 1.2 million request made by the government to have access to customer personal information, as well as the increased number of security breaches has made a number of Canadians more than just a bit nervous.

Despite the growing concern by the general public, the government has done little to ease the tension. Several legislative proposals that are presently put forth before the Parliament appear to be weakening privacy structures even further. One of the latest bills allows organizations to voluntarily disclose customer’s personal information, which includes transmission and tracking data, without their knowledge. In addition the same bill is less strict with warrants to access such information which has experts believing in the possibility of private and sensitive information being leaked. Both the Canadian privacy commissioner as well as the Canadian Civil Liberties Association has been excluded from appearing before the committee studying the bill.

Similarly, Bill S-4, the Digital Privacy Act, due to its loose warranty laws allows for personal information to be accessed by any organization and not just law enforcement. Ones again the general public is left in the dark, as notifications may not be given of when their information may be used and by whom. While the U.S government is stepping up to lock down loose privacy gaps, Canadian government is slow to follow. In fact Canada has recently named senior Justice Lawyer the new Privacy Commissioner of Canada, passing on a number of better qualified candidates for the job. Where the privacy issues of Canada seem to be going is difficult to tell and mending relations with the public is proving to be a challenge for the government with the way privacy laws are currently structured.



About the Author

Paralegal Student
Communications Students.

7 Comments on "“Why has the Canadian government given up on protecting our privacy?” — By: Kate Lucoff"

  1. It’s not that the government has given up on protecting our privacy. They’re dismembering our privacy. In the legal community that’s a pretty glaring distinction.

    And what’s with the slightly obnoxious, red warning? A bit pompous, don’t you think?

  2. Michael Yen | June 5, 2014 at 11:22 am |

    This really reminds us to be vigilant about to whom personal information is given to. Remember to read the fine print and disclaimers and those pop-up boxes on the computer while you’re reading this.
    How unfortunate that we have to think about how to govern privacy now…Hmmm, but now my name is being added to this blog, and I presume I am now being tracked as well?

  3. Ann Barrow | June 5, 2014 at 3:24 pm |

    Excellent point Michael about your merely commenting on a post and knowing that your personal information is being stored. The blog critiques the free wheeling attitude of the Canadian government with privacy laws. It begs the question: “Why?” What does the government have to gain by doing so? I can understand sharing personal information with foreign countries and within domestic spheres in the case of terrorist alerts or criminal activity–those that pose a threat to the public–but to advertisers? Consumers are citizen’s after all and deserve protection in all areas of their lives.

  4. What is private information?

    These days we are so exposed by the information we put on the internet and yet we complain when we find others access or make use of information inappropriately.

    Furthermore, privacy issues were a concern long before the internet. Many financial companies sell or share their client’s information with other financial institutions.

  5. Alyssandra Dunn | June 6, 2014 at 6:57 am |

    It is sad to think that this is what the world has come to. Tracking people and their personal lives. I’ve known a few people who have actually worked for companies where their main purpose was to track the internet habits of citizens by what they look at online, what they click on, what they spend most of their time looking at. This way they can put up specific ads directed to them personally. I always felt this was a little bit creepy. It makes you think as well how “private” are the privacy settings on facebook or instagram. Are they actually protecting your rights or just there for show?

  6. Tamir Salomon | June 8, 2014 at 12:35 pm |

    I say, if people have no fear in posting information about themselves through social media for people to see, then it shouldn’t be such a surprise if that information is leaked somewhere else. How much different is this then 411 or the yellow pages?
    -Tamir Salomon

  7. Lester Tong | June 8, 2014 at 3:08 pm |

    Whatever you post on social media, you should always expect it to be used and seen by people you do not want to see it without your knowledge. You are, after all, posting things on a website owned by people you do not know, used by people you do not know. Should it then not be the user’s responsibility to watch what they post online for others to see knowing that not only their friends and family are browsing through, say, Facebook and Twitter?

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