News releases have been adapted for more convenient viewing online. If you would like an original PDF copy of a news release prior to December 31, 2014, please contact the OIPC.
Canada’s Access to Information and Privacy Guardians Urge Governments to Modernize Legislation to Better Protect Canadians
In a joint resolution, Information and Privacy Ombudspersons and Commissioners from across Canada urged their governments to modernize access to information and privacy laws. “Most Canadian access and privacy laws have not been fundamentally changed since their passage, some more than 35 years ago,” the resolution says. “They have sadly fallen behind the laws of many other countries in the level of privacy protection provided to citizens.” Canada’s access to information and privacy guardians noted that along with its many benefits, the rapid advancement of technologies has had an impact on fundamental democratic principles and human rights, including access to information and privacy.
Commissioner Recommends Legislation for Police Information Checks
The Commissioner publicly issued a letter written to the Minister of Justice and Solicitor General calling for legislation to resolve issues identified by the OIPC and Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench related to police information checks and vulnerable sector checks. The recommendation stems from a case where it was determined that EPS' use and disclosure of an individual's personal information contravened the FOIP Act.
|Letter Police Information Checks Oct2019|
Former Healthcare Worker Fined, Banned from Accessing Health Information
A former billing clerk with Alberta Health Services was fined $8,000 and sentenced to one year of probation with conditions after pleading guilty in Red Deer Provincial Court to knowingly accessing health information in contravention of HIA. One of the probation conditions was for the individual to not be employed in a position that gives him access to health information for one year. Of the 13 convictions for unauthorized access to health information, this was the second case in which one of the conditions was for the convicted not to access health information for one year.
Health Information Breaches Result in Conviction of Clinic Employee
A medical office assistant pleaded guilty in Edmonton Provincial Court to knowingly accessing health information of two individuals on numerous occasions in contravention of HIA on September 26, 2019. The judge issued a $3,500 fine, plus a victim fine surcharge of $525.
Unauthorized Accesses of Health Information Lead to Eleventh Conviction
A former billing clerk with Alberta Health Services pleaded guilty in Red Deer Provincial Court to illegally accessing health information of 52 Albertans under HIA on August 21, 2019. The judge issued a $5,000 fine and ordered the individual not to access health information for one year. The unauthorized accesses occurred in Red Deer.
Activity Sheets, Lesson Plans Help Start the Privacy Conversation with Students
Canada’s privacy authorities issued a number of activity sheets today to assist in teaching students about various privacy issues by presenting them in a visually appealing, easy-to-understand format. These activity sheets follow a series of lesson plans the OIPC, along with federal, provincial and territorial counterparts, issued previously.
Statement from the Information and Privacy Commissioner about Alberta's Privacy Laws and GSAs
The Commissioner issued this statement, and an associated advisory, to respond to various interpretations - or misinterpretations - about how Alberta's privacy laws apply to a student's participation in a gay-straight alliance. The statement and advisory are meant to assist school boards and private schools in determining the legal considerations when drafting policies or making decisions about disclosing a student’s participation in a school club, including GSAs.
|Advisory School Clubs Jun2019|
OIPC Releases Investigation into Management of GoA Emails
The OIPC released an investigation report under the FOIP Act that looked into the management and storage of email at four Government of Alberta (GoA) departments – Service Alberta, Alberta Transportation, Alberta Education and Executive Council. The investigation was opened after the Official Opposition wrote to the Commissioner outlining several concerns about the GoA’s use of email based on access to information request responses it had received from GoA departments.
Lab Assistant Fined for Snooping on Health Information
A lab assistant with Calgary Laboratory Services (CLS) pleaded guilty to and was fined $3,500 for accessing health information in violation of the Health Information Act (HIA) on January 15, 2019. The lab assistant was found to have inappropriately accessed the health records of 11 Albertans between July 18, 2016 and September 5, 2017.
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