BC FIPA and BCCLA file joint submission on proposed amendments to FIPPA

BC FIPA and the BCCLA have sent their comments on proposed amendments to the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA). In line with BC FIPA’s commitment with transparency, these comments were submitted in lieu of confidential participation in the consultation process. The Ministry of Labour, Citizens’ Services, and Open Government is proposing multiple amendments to FIPPA in preparation for their plan to build a centralized system for storing and collecting information from various departments and ministries involved in the provision of services to citizens.

FIPA and BCCLA are fundamentally in disagreement with most of the amendments included in the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Amendment Act, 2011, pursuant to which the amendments to the regulation are being considered.

The bulk of these amendments were passed in order to provide enabling legislation for programs that will collect, use and disclose British Columbians’ personal information on a vast and unprecedented scale in the name of providing “citizen-centered services”. In our view, the program as currently envisioned trades citizens’essential privacy rights for administrative efficiency and will move the province closer than any other in Canada to being the “surveillance state” that privacy commissioners across Canada and around the world have warned about.

Read the full submission (pdf).

BC FIPA and BCCLA Grade the Government on its Implementation of Recommendations on PIPEDA

On November 26, 2006, BC FIPA and the BC Civil Liberties Association made several recommendations on improving the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) to the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics.

Today, both organizations jointly presented their evaluation of the government’s performance in responsding to those recommendations, as well as to the previous recommendations made by the Parliamentary Committee.

Read the report (pdf). PIPEDA Review Submission – Jan 2008

BC FIPA and BCCLA Submission on the Statutory Review of PIPEDA

BC FIPA and the BCCLA have made submissions regarding the statutory review of the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics (ETHI).

This submission highlights a number of issues which must be addressed in order to ensure that the privacy of Canadians continues to be protected by this important piece of federal legislation.

The key issues and recommendations of the submission are:

  • The Office of the Privacy Commissioner (OPC) should publicize complaints.
  • The OPC should develop an effective education function.
  • Fix the responses to security (data) breaches.
  • Address Trans-border Data Flows of Personal Information.
  • Address workplace privacy issues.
  • Address the privacy implications of Electronic Medical Records (EMR).
  • Confront the challenges of emerging privacy-threatening techonologies.
  • Review sections in PIPEDA dealing with consent that are inadequate.
  • Move away from an Ombudsman model and towards order-making powers for the Privacy Commissioner.

Read the full submission (pdf).

BC FIPA publishes “PIPEDA and Identity Theft: Solutions for Protecting Canadians”

In the summer of 2004, ID theft was a hot issue. Since then, it has exploded.

There has been a flurry of activity in Canada and the United States, as regulators and companies alike struggle to keep up with the rapid growth in this white collar crime. Consequently, while the research has progressed, it has been a constant struggle to keep up with the fast-breaking news events and the subsequent policy and legislative responses of governments. We have focused on providing advice and analysis on how to protect the rights of the individual, through the use of existing law, policy, standards, and management practices.

Download the report (pdf).