The Canadian Privacy Law Blog: Developments in privacy law and writings of a Canadian privacy lawyer, containing information related to the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (aka PIPEDA) and other Canadian and international laws.

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The author of this blog, David T.S. Fraser, is a Canadian privacy lawyer who practices with the firm of McInnes Cooper. He is the author of the Physicians' Privacy Manual. He has a national and international practice advising corporations and individuals on matters related to Canadian privacy laws.

For full contact information and a brief bio, please see David's profile.

Please note that I am only able to provide legal advice to clients. I am not able to provide free legal advice. Any unsolicited information sent to David Fraser cannot be considered to be solicitor-client privileged.

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The views expressed herein are solely the author's and should not be attributed to his employer or clients. Any postings on legal issues are provided as a public service, and do not constitute solicitation or provision of legal advice. The author makes no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained herein or linked to. Nothing herein should be used as a substitute for the advice of competent counsel.

This web site is presented for informational purposes only. These materials do not constitute legal advice and do not create a solicitor-client relationship between you and David T.S. Fraser. If you are seeking specific advice related to Canadian privacy law or PIPEDA, contact the author, David T.S. Fraser.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Article: New law guards consumer privacy 

Once again, the Toronto Star is to be applauded for its coverage of PIPEDA. The February 1, 2004 edition had a good article on the topic: New law guards consumer privacy:

"If you are headed to your dentist's office, pharmacy or travel agency, you may be asked to sign a form before you can get service, now that new federal privacy laws are in place.

And in some cases, you may not be able to book an appointment for a family member or have someone pick up a prescription for you without specific permission. The new privacy laws are altering the way many businesses � from pharmacies to dentists, travel agents and even the much-maligned 407 toll road � do business.

'The new law means you just can't go and collect information about people willy-nilly,' says Irwin Fefergrad, registrar with the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario.

Consumers must now be told what information is collected about them, how it is used and why it is collected. Every operation, large and small, from video stores and magazine publishers to charities and accounting firms, will need to get its information management practices in order if it wants to avoid possible court action and fines, in some cases of $10,000. Consent may be written, verbal or implied � meaning that, by using a service, a person consents. However, the person must be given a chance to opt out.

Fefergrad says that will definitely mean some changes in wording and protocols. 'You can't leave personal information on voice mail, for example.' He says people may not be able to make some dental appointments for a family member without their written permission. But he notes dentists already have strong confidentiality rules."

(Once again, there's an otherwise accurate article that suggests that you can be fined for violating consumer privacy. Not a bad message to send people fleeing to privacy lawyers, but the info is still wrong.)


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