December 9, 2020
Privacy Commissioner of Canada Daniel Therrien made the following statement during a press conference.
(Check against delivery)
Good morning, and thank you for joining me.
As some of you will know, my mandate as Commissioner will come to a close in June, which means this will be my final annual report to Parliament.
Since my mandate began in 2014, my office has sought to advance privacy interests by publishing guidance and policy positions – for instance on meaningful consent and online reputation – and through investigations that have identified how real are the threats to our rights, whether to democratic rights in Facebook/Cambridge Analytica, or through mass surveillance as in the Clearview matter. Our attempts generally fell short due to major flaws in our laws.
When it comes to federal privacy laws, our societal values and fundamental rights, centuries in the making, are not adequately protected. That must change – hence the title of this report: Projecting our values into laws.
There is no doubt that the modern economy depends, and will increasingly depend, on the value of data. The pandemic has shown that digital technologies can serve the public interest. Building a sustainable economy in a post-pandemic world will require the responsible use of personal data.
Reform of privacy laws is therefore urgently required, in part for economic…