Secure Flight & Privacy Rights

The US Secure Flight Program has garnered much public concern and disapproval in Canada, where many Canadians are finding themselves subject to the controversial regulations when flying over US airspace. Aviation security is a high priority issue for the Canadian federal Privacy Commissioner, who earlier this year carried out an investigation of airport security scanners being installed in Canadian airports. While security is an issue in the aviation industry, the Privacy Commissioner, along with other privacy watchdogs, insist that security measures must also respect the privacy and personal dignity of travelers in Canadian [...]

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Identity Management and National ID Cards

According to the OPC (Office of the Privacy Commissioner), the concept of identity is defined simply as how a person is known, either by other people, or by an organization. An individual’s identity is a distinguishing set of information that may vary from context to context. For instance, family and friends may identify a person by certain traits; an employer might identify a person by role, skill or position; and a service provider might identify a person by a unique identification number. This article examines identity concepts and identity management systems that citizens come in contact with on a daily basis, as well as the possibility of a national identity [...]

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RFID Technology

In recent years, RFID (radio frequency identification) has caught the attention of privacy watchdogs, civil organizations and the general public. Its ability to identify and track items as well as individuals raises a number of privacy and security concerns, while the potential for integration into numerous contexts has increased with the development of technology. Discussion and integration of RFID in the workplace, retail situations and other environments should be informed by a number of privacy-respecting practices that will be explored in this [...]

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Surveillance & Investigation in Canada

The introduction of Bills C-46 and C-47 in Canada sparked concern regarding the role of the federal government and other authorities to expand surveillance and increase investigation of the Canadian public. The bills were tabled June 2009 and continue to be met with much concern. This article will elaborate on the significant aspects of each bill, with an eye to some of the potential privacy concerns that may be [...]

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Youth Privacy in Canada

Youth privacy is increasingly important, especially in light of how young people adeptly integrate the Internet and online serves into their daily lives. Under the United Nations 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child, privacy is a basic human right for everyone under the age of 18. In the United States, the FTC passed the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act in 1998, specifically protecting children under age 13. Canadian privacy legislation – the PIPEDA and the Privacy Act – also ensure that children’s privacy is protected in the private and public spheres. The Canadian Privacy Commissioner has made youth privacy one of the issues to focus on for [...]

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