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The following is a list of some of the most recent postings on the website, including Orders, Investigation Reports, news releases and resources. The dates below correspond to the date that each item was posted on the website.

Order H2021-01: Alberta Health Services
February 25, 2021

An individual made a complaint under HIA that their Electronic Health Record (Netcare) had been accessed by their estranged spouse (the employee) in July 2008, without authority. The employee worked for Alberta Health Services (AHS). The individual made a similar complaint in October 2012 that their health information had been accessed by the employee in 2012. In the present case, the Adjudicator determined that AHS provided insufficient evidence or explanation to find that the access by the employee (as affiliate) in 2008 was authorized. However, the Adjudicator was satisfied that AHS met its duty to protect health information (section 60(1) HIA). The Adjudicator found that the actions taken by AHS in response to the 2012 access by the same employee were sufficient as a remedy. As those actions were taken after the 2008 access at issue in this inquiry, they also addressed that contravention of the Act. The Adjudicator concluded that there were no further steps AHS must take.

Order F2021-02: Town of Athabasca
February 25, 2021

An individual made an access request under the FOIP Act to the Town of Athabasca (public body) for a legal opinion that was given to the town council by a particular lawyer with a named law firm, about a specific matter (requested record). The public body denied the applicant access to the requested record under section 27(1)(a) of the FOIP Act on the basis of solicitor-client privilege. The Adjudicator found that the public body had established on a balance of probabilities that solicitor-client privilege applied to the requested record. The Adjudicator further found that the disclosure of the requested record by the public body to the municipal inspector under the Municipal Government Act was a limited waiver of solicitor-client privilege to the municipal inspector for a limited purpose and did not amount to a waiver of the privilege to the applicant or to the world at large. The Adjudicator found that none of the other circumstances identified by the applicant amounted to a waiver or loss of solicitor-client privilege by the public body. Finally, the Adjudicator found that if it was appropriate to review the public body’s exercise of discretion in withholding the requested record, the public body had properly exercised its discretion in deciding to withhold the requested record.

Order F2021-03: Edmonton Police Service
February 25, 2021

An individual made a request to correct personal information contained within an Edmonton Police Service (EPS) street check report. In the street check report, a police officer referred to the applicant as a “known trafficker” and “wanna be bad dude”, which the applicant described as “inaccurate, inflammatory and highly prejudicial” in submitting the request to correct personal information. EPS refused to correct the information on the basis that it was opinion. It appended the information to the applicant’s request pursuant to section 36(3) of the FOIP Act, which requires a public body to annotate or link a correction request to personal information, rather than correct it, when the personal information that is the subject of the request is opinion. The Adjudicator determined that EPS had complied with its duty under section 36 of the FOIP Act. The Adjudicator found that the correction request was more properly characterized as a privacy complaint, rather than a correction request, in that EPS had not met its duty to the applicant to ensure the accuracy and completeness of personal information that it would use to make decisions affecting the applicant’s rights. The Adjudicator found that EPS had not demonstrated that it had made all reasonable efforts to ensure that the personal information at issue was accurate and complete for the purposes of making decisions when it was entered into the Edmonton Police Reporting and Occurrence System (EPROS) and maintained in that database. EPS was directed to comply with its duty under section 35 with regard to the statement that the applicant is a “known trafficker and wanna be bad dude”, by ensuring that it would not be used to make decisions affecting the applicant’s rights in the future.

Order F2021-04: Alberta Health Services
February 25, 2021

An individual made an access request under the FOIP Act to Alberta Health Services (AHS) for certain information. The Public Body responded and provided the applicant with 428 pages of responsive records. The applicant believed AHS did not provide her with all responsive records. The Adjudicator found that AHS had conducted an adequate search and met its duty to assist the applicant under section 10(1) of the Act.

News Release: Clearview AI's Practices Represented Mass Surveillance
February 3, 2021

Technology company Clearview AI’s scraping of billions of images of people from across the Internet represented mass surveillance and was a clear violation of the privacy rights of Canadians, an investigation has found. The joint investigation by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, the Commission d'accès à l'information du Québec, the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia and the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta, concluded that the New-York-based technology company violated federal and provincial privacy laws.

Investigation Report P2021-IR-01: Clearview AI, Inc.
February 3, 2021

The joint investigation by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, the Commission d'accès à l'information du Québec, the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia and the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta concluded that the New-York-based technology company violated federal and provincial privacy laws. The investigation found that Clearview had collected highly sensitive biometric information without the knowledge or consent of individuals. Furthermore, Clearview collected, used and disclosed Canadians’ personal information for inappropriate purposes, which cannot be rendered appropriate via consent.

Commissioner's Full Statement on Clearview AI Investigation
February 3, 2021

Information and Privacy Commissioner made this statement during the news conference announcing the findings of the Clearview AI joint investigation.

Order F2021-01: City of Edmonton
February 1, 2021

An individual made an access request to the City of Edmonton for information related to a property adjacent to her own property. The applicant challenged the City of Edmonton’s redactions under the FOIP Act, and also alleged that it failed to conduct a proper search for records under section 10 of the Act and failed to respond to the access request in time, as required by section 11. The City of Edmonton provided 1,284 pages of responsive records, with redactions citing sections pertaining to disclosure harmful to personal privacy (section 17), advice from officials (section 24) and disclosure harmful to economic and other interests of a public body (section 25), as well as on the basis that information was non-responsive. During the inquiry, the City of Edmonton decided to release all information withheld under sections 24 and 25. It also admitted that it failed to meet the timelines to respond to the request under section 11 of the FOIP Act. The Adjudicator found the City of Edmonton conducted a reasonable search for records as required by section 10, and properly redacted information under section 17 and as non-responsive.

Adjudication Order No. 12
January 20, 2021

The OIPC was ordered to make contact information on independent contractors and consultants available to the applicant. Before releasing the information, the OIPC was directed to first inform the affected third parties of the request for their information, in order for them to be heard.

News Release: Pharmacist Fined for Breaching Health Information
January 19, 2021

An Edmonton-based pharmacist received a $5,000 fine, plus a $1,000 victim fine surcharge, for using the health information of an individual with whom he was in a vehicle accident in an attempt to persuade the individual from submitting an insurance claim for the vehicle accident.

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