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.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Canadian Privacy and the USA Patriot Act 

Interesting how this has only now appeared on the US radar screens. When this was only about the British Columbia and Alberta governments, the only coverage was Canadian. Now that there is some small reaction out of Ottawa, it shows up in the US media ...

UPI Intelligence Watch - (United Press International):

"Washington, DC, Feb. 4 (UPI) -- Because of security concerns related to the Patriot Act, the Canadian government will revise the wording of future federal contracts. Ottawa will attempt to blunt U.S. ability, granted under the act to tap into personal information about Canadians. The Canadian government is particularly concerned that the FBI might attempt to view sensitive Canadian data the government supplies to American firms doing business with federal departments in Ottawa. Ottawa has requested that all government agencies and departments conduct a "comprehensive assessment of risks" to Canadian information they release to U.S. companies when fulfilling work under contract. The Patriot Act gave the FBI broader access to the records of U.S. firms. Under its provisions, the FBI can apply to a U.S. court to force a business to allow access to its records, including information about Canadians, to assist with investigations involving prevention of terrorism or espionage. Canadian Privacy Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart says that if a Canadian federal entity hires an American company to process personal information about Canadians, then U.S. laws apply to the data if the work is being done in the United States. The federal Treasury Board is in charge of a working group that is drafting special clauses to be used in future business proposal requests and contracts. According a federal notice recently circulated to departments, the group is consulting with Stoddart's office on clauses "that we believe to be fundamental" to include in future request proposals and contracts. Treasury Board spokesman Robert Makichuk said the changes would "further enhance and clarify existing protection" for such things as establishing custody and control of data, ensuring confidentiality of information and setting conditions related to use and disclosure."

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