Tag: Privacy

Alberta PIPA violates Charter says Supreme Court in IPC v United Food and Commercial WorkersAlberta PIPA violates Charter says Supreme Court in IPC v United Food and Commercial Workers



The Supreme Court released a landmark decision today in the  Alberta (Information and Privacy Commissioner) v. United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 401, 2013 SCC 62 case. In short, the Court found that while Alberta’s privacy legislation PIPA plays a vital role in protecting privacy, it violated the Charter right to freedom of expression by precluding the use of personal information in the labour context. The ruling is an appeal from a decision the Alberta Court of Appeal, which is summarized here.

Privacy Commissioners speak about Getting Accountability Right at CLHIA ConferencePrivacy Commissioners speak about Getting Accountability Right at CLHIA Conference



Last week I had the pleasure of listening to a great talk titled “Privacy: Getting Accountability Right” at the 2013 Compliance and Consumer Complaints Annual Conference organized by the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Asscoiation Inc. Taking place in sunny Vancouver (see below), the speakers were Barbara Bucknell of the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, Jill Clayton, Information and Privacy Commissioner, Alberta, and Elizabeth Denham, Information and Privacy Commissioner, British Columba.

 

 

Here is a summary of their remarks.

IPC v UFCW Charter/privacy case going to Supreme Court (updated)IPC v UFCW Charter/privacy case going to Supreme Court (updated)



If privacy legislation significantly impairs Charter rights do privacy rights or Charter rights prevail? Specifically, does an individual’s right to privacy for publically crossing a picket line under Alberta’s comprehensive privacy legislation Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) have to yield to a union’s right of free expression to film and disseminate that act under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms? This question was answered in the affirmative by the Alberta Court of Appeal in United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 401 v Alberta (Attorney General), 2012 ABCA 130.

Charter protects employees’ privacy in data stored on employer computers rules Supreme court in R v ColeCharter protects employees’ privacy in data stored on employer computers rules Supreme court in R v Cole



The Supreme Court released its reasons in R. v. Cole, 2012 SCC 53 on Friday. It confirmed that a person has a reasonable expectation of privacy in his personal computer, even if it is owned by his or her employer. A police search of the computer without a warrant violated the accused’s rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. However, the evidence could nevertheless be admitted into evidence on the facts of the case.

The facts in R v Cole were summed up in the headnote of the case as follows:

The accused, a high-school teacher, was charged with possession of child pornography and unauthorized use of a computer.  

Privacy protects anonymity in cyberbulling case says Supreme CourtPrivacy protects anonymity in cyberbulling case says Supreme Court



The Supreme Court released its reasons in the A.B. v. Bragg Communications Inc., 2012 SCC 46 case yesterday. The main issue in the case was whether the privacy interests of a child to keep her identity anonymous in legal proceedings outweighed the open court principle.

The case arose from a 15-year-old girl finding out that someone had posted a Facebook profile using her picture, a slightly modified version of her name, and other particulars identifying her. Accompanying the picture was some unflattering commentary about the girl’s appearance along with sexually explicit references.

Contracting for a cloud computing deal?Contracting for a cloud computing deal?



Cloud computing is on the mind of many CIO’s these days. Its also on the mind of lawyers. Lawyers know contracting for cloud services can be difficult given the potential risks associated with these services. For regulated entities like Canadian financial institutions, a material public cloud transaction also poses serious OSFI compliance challenges. The standard form contracts of many cloud providers also contributes to the difficulties. For a survey of these terms, see Simon Bradshaw et al Contracts for Clouds: Comparison and Analysis of the Terms and Conditions of Cloud Computing Services.

EU Commission proposes comprehensive reform of data protection rulesEU Commission proposes comprehensive reform of data protection rules



Yesterday, the European Commission proposed a comprehensive reform of the EU’s 1995 data protection rules to strengthen online privacy rights and boost Europe’s digital economy. Highlights of the reform plan are described by the Commission as follows:

  • A single set of rules on data protection, valid across the EU. Unnecessary administrative requirements, such as notification requirements for companies, will be removed. This will save businesses around €2.3 billion a year.
  • Instead of the current obligation of all companies to notify all data protection activities to data protection supervisors – a requirement that has led to unnecessary paperwork and costs businesses €130 million per year, the Regulation provides for increased responsibility and accountability for those processing personal data.

Ontario recognizes privacy tort of intrusion upon seclusionOntario recognizes privacy tort of intrusion upon seclusion



The Ontario Court of Appeal formally recognized today the existence of a tort for an intrusion upon seclusion. In the widely watched case of Jones v Tsige 2012 ONCA 32, the Court reviewed the prior case law from around the country, the US and the Commonwealth. After doing so, it concluded that Ontario has already accepted the existence of a tort claim for appropriation of personality and that it was appropriate for the Court to confirm the existence of a right of action for intrusion upon seclusion.

Copyright and privacy bills to be introduced in House of CommonsCopyright and privacy bills to be introduced in House of Commons



The Government will likely introduce new Bills to amend the Copyright Act and the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) within the next few days. The Parliament of Canada Notice Paper for Wednesday September 28, 2011 provides notice that the Minister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture) will introduce a Bill entitled “An Act to Amend the Copyright Act” and a Bill entitled “An Act to Amend the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act”.  The actual notices are dated September 27, 2011, which means that the Bills could be introduced as early as this Thursday.

Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2010-2011)Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2010-2011)



Here are the slides used in my presentation to the Toronto Computer Lawyers Group earlier today, The Year in Review: Developments in Computer, Internet and E-Commerce Law (2010-2011). It covers significant developements since my talk last spring.

The slides include a summary of the following cases and statutory materials:

Privacy:

Cite Cards Canada Inc. v. Pleasance, 2011 ONCA 3

Leon’s Furniture Limited v. Alberta (Information and Privacy Commissioner), 2011 ABCA 94

State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company v. Privacy Commissioner of Canada, 2010 FC 736

Nammo v.