Sidebar: PIPEDA’s ‘No-go’ zones for businesses

The federal Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) applies to all businesses in Canada except those in B.C., Alberta, and Quebec.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) notes that PIPEDA states that any collection, use, or disclosure of personal information must only be for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances.

PIPEDA is based on 10 fair principles for the collection and use of personal data of employees, customers and partners. Three of these are, arguably, the most important:

— the knowledge and consent of the individual are required for the collection, use, or disclosure of personal information, except where inappropriate;

— the collection of personal information must be limited to what is needed for the purposes identified by the organization. Information must be collected by fair and lawful means;

— unless the individual consents otherwise or it is required by law, personal information can only be used or disclosed for the purposes for which it was collected. Personal information must only be kept as long as required to serve those purposes.

To make it clearer, the OPC says the following purposes would generally be considered inappropriate — or, what it calls no-go zones — by a reasonable person:

  • collecting, using, or disclosing personal information in ways that are otherwise unlawful;
  • profiling or categorizing individuals in a way that leads to unfair, unethical, or discriminatory treatment contrary to human rights law;
  • collecting, using, or disclosing personal information for purposes that are known to, or likely to, cause significant harm to the individual;
  • publishing personal information with the intent of charging people for its removal;
  • requiring employees to provide passwords to their social media accounts to employers for the purpose of employee screening; and
  • conducting surveillance on an individual using their own device’s audio or video functions.

Would you recommend this article?

Share

Thanks for taking the time to let us know what you think of this article!
We'd love to hear your opinion about this or any other story you read in our publication.


Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

Featured Download

Howard Solomon
Howard Solomon
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of ITWorldCanada.com and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for several of ITWC's sister publications including ITBusiness.ca and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times. I can be reached at hsolomon [@] soloreporter.com

Related Tech News

Our experienced team of journalists and bloggers bring you engaging in-depth interviews, videos and content targeted to IT professionals and line-of-business executives.

Featured Reads