13 Jun 2012
22 Feb 2012

Vic Toews Response about Bill C-30

Thank you for contacting my office regarding Bill C-30, the Protecting Children from Internet Predators Act.

Canada’s laws currently do not adequately protect Canadians from online exploitation and we think there is widespread agreement that this is a problem.

We want to update our laws while striking the right balance between combating crime and protecting privacy.

Let me be very clear: the police will not be able to read emails or view web activity unless they obtain a warrant issued by a judge and we have constructed safeguards to protect the privacy of Canadians, including audits by privacy commissioners.

What’s needed most is an open discussion about how to better protect Canadians from online crime. We will therefore send this legislation directly to Parliamentary Committee for a full examination of the best ways to protect Canadians while respecting their privacy.

For your information, I have included some myths and facts below regarding Bill C-30 in its current state.

Sincerely,

Vic Toews

Member of Parliament for Provencher

Myth: Lawful Access legislation infringes on the privacy of Canadians.

Fact: Our Government puts a high priority on protecting the privacy of law-abiding Canadians. Current practices of accessing the actual content of communications with a legal authorization will not change.

Myth: Having access to basic subscriber information means that authorities can monitor personal communications and activities.

Fact: This has nothing to do with monitoring emails or web browsing.  Basic subscriber information would be limited to a customer’s name, address, telephone number, email address, Internet Protocol (IP) address, and the name of the telecommunications service provider. It absolutely does not include the content of emails, phones calls or online activities.

Myth: This legislation does not benefit average Canadians and only gives authorities more power.

Fact:  As a result of technological innovations, criminals and terrorists have found ways to hide their illegal activities. This legislation will keep Canadians safer by putting police on the same footing as those who seek to harm us.

Myth: Basic subscriber information is way beyond “phone book information”.

Fact: The basic subscriber information described in the proposed legislation is the modern day equivalent of information that is in the phone book. Individuals frequently freely share this information online and in many cases it is searchable and quite public.

Myth: Police and telecommunications service providers will now be required to maintain databases with information collected on Canadians.

Fact: This proposed legislation will not require either police or telecommunications service providers to create databases with information collected on Canadians.

Myth: “Warrantless access” to customer information will give police and government unregulated access to our personal information.

Fact: Federal legislation already allows telecommunications service providers to voluntarily release basic subscriber information to authorities without a warrant. This Bill acts as a counterbalance by adding a number of checks and balances which do not exist today, and clearly lists which basic subscriber identifiers authorities can access.

 

In response to my first email to Vic

 

As one of the numerous small business owners breaking a path for our digital economy I’m frustrated by our governments internet policy. Your statements regarding the Liberal Members comments were out of line. The course trekked by your colleagues, be it surveillance with out warrent in your Lawfull Access bill or the digital lock provisions that nullify fair use in c11 is one that puts our country on the back roads of innovation.

I plead with you Mr. Toews that what is needed in our government internet policy is education for citizens for digital work and infrastructure investment so they can do that work.  Not social engineering and pornographer fear mongering.

Old men look at the internet and see porn, young men look at the internet and see asia with better access and better labour. The problem is I don’t trust that you guys have any respect for what your playing with and how it’s going to effect the latter. You take a issue as serious as child porn to nurture real reservation about ill conceived policy and it’s repugnant to see happen. We need real discussion about how to get ahead of Germany and Asia not distractions and censorship firewalls to rival China’s.

Because let’s be clear, we all know this is just the entertainment industry using child porn to push turn key systems for piracy tracking. A small industry in our economy is scaring the shit out of grandparents to support facist policy for the purpose of stopping people from stealing lady gaga albums.

Sir, I know your not a fascist but surveillance, without due process and cause, of an entire population is a fascist policy and non too bright.

Keith Page
Owner, Digital Employer, Albertan Farmer

 

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12 Jan 2010

Google slaps the Peeking Duck.

Google justified going into Chinese market by saying they would back track on that decision if their presence was doing more bad then good, aka if they became and agent of the repression instead of an agent of change. Today Google announced they are going to the Chinese Government with an ultimatum of sorts, Google.cn will be uncensored or Google.cn won’t exist.

China doesn’t need Google in a real sense, they are more then adequately blessed with technical talent, know how and search engines of their own. Google pulling out would however put pressure on other western based providers to do the same, if this cascade effect were to take place some serious pressure might come to play. Google being the big dog has the ability to cause such cascades.

Power regimes being what they are tend to be susceptible to perceived slights and therefore love to engage face saving. The Chinese may very well opt to agree to  Google request with glowing support and hearty handshakes, or they might punch Google/The West directly in the face. Both responses designed to save face.

All of this has been brought about by a recent Cyber attack on Google that originated from China. Follow ups have shown to Googles powers that be that someone was trying to get into the Gmail Accounts of Chinese Human Rights Activist. On top of that a number of other activist accounts from around the world have been routinely accessed by third parties. These are people who would generally be considered dissidents in their own countries. It stands to reason the only party interested in infiltrating their email accounts would be the Governments that they are fighting.

The legitimate concern of third parties reading your gmail/hotmail/yahoo mail brings up a question. What can be done to help people know when their account has been compromised?

Gmail Last LoginGoogle/Hotmail/Yahoo would do well to implement a last login banner in their email service to protect against this. The IP geo tagged and timestamped indicating  the last ip to login to your account would go very far in notifying concerned individuals that someone maybe reading their email, and for some people that can mean the difference between life death, or false imprisonment.

Read Googles announcement for yourself.

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