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.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Privacy Commissioner commissions study of Canadian attitudes and awareness of privacy law 

Hot off the wires ...

The Federal Privacy Commissioner has commissioned EKOS Research Associates to survey Canadians on their privacy awareness and attitudes (For the survey results, see Canadians, Privacy, and Emerging Issue - Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada). A small fraction of Canadians are aware of the laws that are designed to protect privacy but increasing numbers are concerned about privacy and cross-border transfers of information.

Majority of Canadians demand informed consent on cross-border sharing of their personal information:

"OTTAWA, June 20 /CNW Telbec/ - The level of concern and demand for consent on cross-border sharing of personal information is extremely high amongst Canadians, according to an EKOS Research Associates survey commissioned by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. Approximately 90 percent of Canadians surveyed wish to not only be informed but insist on governments and the private sector obtaining their permission before sharing their information cross-border.

"There is a growing lack of confidence by Canadians in the protection of their personal information being transferred across borders and support for greater government oversight to better understand the full impact of the issue on their privacy rights. Governments need to be proactive in responding to this concern and at a minimum include consent provisions in any outsourcing or contract arrangements with foreign governments or companies," says Privacy Commissioner of Canada Jennifer Stoddart.

Highlights of survey:

  • 70 percent of Canadians surveyed express a high sense of erosion of their privacy and the protection of their personal information, and predict that it is one of the most important issues facing the country.
  • Although they are not familiar with privacy laws, about three in four Canadians agree on the need for strong laws to protect their personal information.
  • The issue of cross-border transfer of personal information is an example of how privacy laws have not kept pace with how new technologies are impacting on the way in which companies use and transfer Canadians' personal information. In fact, nine in 10 Canadians see a need for ongoing updating of privacy legislation.
  • A strong majority of Canadians surveyed indicate low confidence in the area of technology and privacy protection. Although about three in 10 Canadians are willing to allow companies to track how they shop in return for a discount on products and services, Canadians significantly agree they should be notified about the privacy implications of the products and services they buy.

"We are pleased that Canadians have expressed support for strong and responsive public and private sector privacy laws which are crucial to protecting the personal information of Canadians in today's advanced security and technology environment which is marked by data sharing between public and private organizations." says Privacy Commissioner of Canada Jennifer Stoddart.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada is mandated by Parliament to act as an ombudsman, advocate and guardian of the privacy and protection of personal information rights of Canadians.

For a copy of the EKOS Research Associates survey, please visit:"


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