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.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Canadian draft guidelines to shield personal information from the USA Patriot Act 

The Canadian Press just released a story about new draft guidelines for Canadian federal government departments designed to (at least try to) shield information about Canadians from the reach of the USA Patriot Act. The guidelines remain in draft form as the election has intervened to prevent them from being tabled in Parliament this fall and more internal consultations are taking place.

Canada drafts proposals to shield personal data from U.S. anti-terror law - Yahoo! News

... The draft guidance document suggests, in the interest of upholding Canadian privacy laws, that federal databases of sensitive personal information created by contractors be located in Canada and be accessible only within the country.

However, it recognizes international trade obligations may make this impossible. In such cases, the government suggests contractors must agree to respect Canadian privacy laws as a condition of contract.

The guidelines say that if the privacy risk is considered high, a federal department might go so far as to cut off the flow of personal information to a foreign firm should it be "presented with an order" - such as an FBI notice - compelling release of data about Canadians.

In general, the guidelines encourage departments to assess each potential contract case-by-case to gauge the possibility of privacy invasion, the expectations of Canadians, and likelihood of injury to a person's "career, reputation, financial position, safety, health or well-being."

Treasury Board spokesman Robert Makichuk said the draft guidelines were undergoing revision following internal federal consultations....

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