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Canadian ISP On Disclosing Subscriber Info: Come Back With a Warrant

samzenpus posted about 2 months ago | from the take-off dept.

Canada 55

An anonymous reader writes "Canadian ISP Rogers has updated its privacy policy to reflect last month's Supreme Court of Canada Spencer decision. That decision ruled that there was a reasonable expectation of privacy in subscriber information. Canada's largest cable ISP will now require a warrant for law enforcement access to basic subscriber information, a policy that effectively kills the Canadian government's efforts to expand the disclosures through voluntary means."

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Now we wait (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47471245)

Now we wait and see if Bell and Tellus do the same.

Re:Now we wait (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 2 months ago | (#47473039)

Oh, I'll give you this shiny nickle if you give me that subscriber info. I know, how about a whole dollar, one for each record in your database. Of course, you only get them if you give us all the records...

Re:Now we wait (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47474525)

Oh probably. I don't see much difference between the big three companies.

Good for them (3, Informative)

by (1706743) (1706744) | about 2 months ago | (#47471247)

Unfortunate that respecting privacy to the extent the law permits is the exception, not the norm...

Re:Good for them (2)

roc97007 (608802) | about 2 months ago | (#47471301)

Unfortunate that respecting privacy to the extent the law permits is the exception, not the norm...

Yes. Sadly, that's why it's news. Were it the norm, it would not be news...

Re:Good for them (1)

currently_awake (1248758) | about 2 months ago | (#47471619)

If the company publicly states that the data is private and only disclosed via warrant then that court ruling applies. If the ISP declares the data accessible to the police at will, then the client loses their expectation of privacy and the court ruling doesn't apply.

Re:Good for them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47473569)

No, the ISP does not get to decide when reasonable expectations of privacy apply. The court has determined that it applies to subscriber data.

Re:Good for them (1)

dunkindave (1801608) | about 2 months ago | (#47471309)

This is what they say, now let's see what they do! I truly hope they are true to their words, including behind the scenes where we don't normally see.

Re:Good for them (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | about 2 months ago | (#47471343)

Err... not to the extent the law permits... to the minimum the law requires

But the two are related closely. In the US, metadata is considered the corporations, which obviously has no privacy right to the data. The idea is that the person has already disclosed that data. Hence, the government has a much lower, well non-existent, burden on law enforcement because they are asking for business records, not for personal information.

In Canada, it seems that just got inverted, so now it's private information vouchsafed to a company.

Bottom line, neither case seems to offer corporations a choice in the matter.

Re: Good for them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47471393)

I wish the nexus between _privacy_ and *confidentiality* were correctly understood and applied.

Re:Good for them (1)

dryeo (100693) | about 2 months ago | (#47471855)

The Canadian courts think that our right against unreasonable search is actually a right to privacy and it's not just the government that has to respect that right, businesses have to respect rights as well.
Another example is that the courts have ruled that companies can't do drug tests for no reason whereas down the States it seems to be standard procedure even if (off-work) drug use has no bearing on the job.

Re:Good for them (1)

skywire (469351) | about 2 months ago | (#47472167)

Perhaps you should read what you are replying to before replying.

YAY US (3, Insightful)

maliqua (1316471) | about 2 months ago | (#47471299)

Fuck you american corporations

Re:YAY US (1)

rmdingler (1955220) | about 2 months ago | (#47471709)

I'll bet the Canadians who rendered this binding opinion

did so in a completely gentlemanly manner...

with profound politeness and thoughtful adjectives.

Re:YAY US (1)

BForrester (946915) | about 2 months ago | (#47473895)

Dearest representatives of the corporate interests of the United States of America:

It behooves me to request that, as we collectively drop the rears of our trousers, would you kindly bend down and kiss our asses? Only if you please, eh?

With tender, gentlemanly affection,

Your friendly neighbour,

Canada

This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P.P. (4, Interesting)

MrKevvy (85565) | about 2 months ago | (#47471321)

One of the draconian provisions of the upcoming Trans-Pacific Partnership, which the Canadian government unfortunately signed on to (and just hosted a meeting of in Ottawa) is that ISPs are legally expected to monitor and rat out their customers for accessing verboten content, ie torrents.

I hope that this is the beginning of the end for that idea.

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47471455)

The united states stops at the border i'm sick of them expecting us to just do every god damn thing they want us to do, and in return do we get thanks? nope we get mocked constantly by American media as ignorant simple people.

I agree with you 100% and i desperately hope that this stance becomes the standard in our country, no order from a Canadian court then no access to the information of our citizens for your legal trolls

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 months ago | (#47471495)

ISPs are legally expected to monitor and rat out their customers for accessing verboten content, ie torrents.

Not that I'm disputing the fact that more than a healthy percentage of torrent downloading is copyrighted content where unauthorized copies (ie, copies for which no explicit permission was ever given to make) are being distributed, but not *ALL* of it is... so who does the ISP "rat out" their customers to?

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 2 months ago | (#47471703)

Re "I hope that this is the beginning of the end for that idea."
Canada seems to want the self signed bureaucratic option. Officials will go looking, get isp logs, users full details and then seek a real court for the later stages of an investigation.
ie customer information, no reasonable expectation of privacy, no warrant is required for warrantless "looking" at internet activity :)
How this new court event will slow down that vision of finding and ip, logging usage and review will be interesting.
Long term law changes could allow cleared local town, city officials and police in say Australia, Canada or the UK a form of automated interfaces into all their nations isp logs and web 2.0 sites.
Within new laws they could find a user via an ip, log usage, review the past many months and track all new activity of that users account.
Just "looking" at months of web history and your full account details.
Australia had news on issues like this "Greens unveil plan to require warrant to access phone and internet records"
http://www.theguardian.com/wor... [theguardian.com] (11 June 2013)
"2007 to the Telecommunications Interception Act clarified that so-called “metadata” – email addresses, information about where emails are sent and from whom they are received and who is called from a certain telephone number, from which location and for how long – can be accessed simply by filling in forms"

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (2)

dryeo (100693) | about 2 months ago | (#47471837)

The big difference between Australia and the UK compared to Canada is that Canada's constitution includes a bill of rights and the Supreme Court isn't shy about striking down laws as unconstitutional and the same with lesser courts including throwing out ill gotten evidence so here it's actually the courts requiring warrants and the government can't (actually this one will) just pass unconstitutional laws without ramifications.

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 2 months ago | (#47471937)

The problem is the lack of warrants over some time is what induced this law reform. Also recall the political pressure to allow new colour of law warrantless logging and isp account tracking.
ie rolled back in under the cover of 10's of pages related to cyber bullying laws with legal protections for isp providing support and tacking in a lower “reasonable suspicion” standard.
'Say no to government spying" (March 31, 2014)
http://fullcomment.nationalpos... [nationalpost.com]

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 2 months ago | (#47472183)

The courts have already struck down provisions in law regarding both "reasonable suspicion" and "exigent circumstances." Slapping it back into the law, will ensure it ends right back up at the SCC and struck down again.

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47472745)

Slapping it back into the law, will ensure it ends right back up at the SCC and struck down again.

Until there are laws that charge politicians with treason every time they knowingly do this, they will continue to follow the following formula,

1. pass some laws to appease corporate lobby or some police state loving people
2. laws are used
3. eventually, someone challenges said laws
4. eventually, the courts tell the government FU, the law is unconstitutional and is struck down
5. go to step #1

Just because laws are unconstitutional does not mean they are not enacted anyway. Before they are struck down, they are used to fuck up the lives of people that are impacted by these laws, be these good guys or bad guys (many times laws are passed to easier take out bad guys).

Take the Quebec's laws on protests.

http://news.nationalpost.com/2... [nationalpost.com]

So, many politicians don't view constitution as something blocking them, just slightly impeding their efforts. Remember, they are lawyers *and* constitutionality of laws they pass don't have much consequence on their paycheck or their future.

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (2)

Mashiki (184564) | about 2 months ago | (#47473081)

Until there are laws that charge politicians with treason every time they knowingly do this, they will continue to follow the following formula,

There *is* a law on treason, this isn't treason going by your narrow view of it. Rather, this is what you want people to be charged with when they pass laws that disagree with you. In turn, governments have it in their interest to pass laws that in general benefit society. Quebecs protest laws are an example of this, especially after the spate of individuals masking their identities and engaging in vandalism, and attempting to riot for the sake of rioting. The courts on the other hand have the right to counter this, when there is a grievance by citizens against the government which is what's happening in this case.

Remember S1 of the charter in Canada? And remember that Quebec didn't sign the charter. Right, now remember that in Quebec they don't use common law. Put those three things together and what do we have?

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

TheP4st (1164315) | about 2 months ago | (#47473269)

In turn, governments have it in their interest to pass laws that in general benefit society.

If you consider the very wealthy and corporations to be society then what you write is true for most governments. But if you consider the majority of the electorate being society, then not so. For an example of what I mean look at the recent study from Princeton University and Northwestern University that reached the conclusion that the USA is an oligarchy.

Multivariate analysis indicates that economic elites and organised groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on US government policy, while average citizens and mass-based interest groups have little or no independent influence.

When a majority of citizens disagrees with economic elites and/or with organised interests, they generally lose. Moreover, because of the strong status quo bias built into the US political system, even when fairly large majorities of Americans favour policy change, they generally do not get it.

Source: http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-... [bbc.com]

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 2 months ago | (#47473439)

If you consider the very wealthy and corporations to be society then what you write is true for most governments. But if you consider the majority of the electorate being society, then not so. For an example of what I mean look at the recent study from Princeton University and Northwestern University that reached the conclusion that the USA is an oligarchy.

Sorry, did I miss something when Canada became the US; or are you just happier posting something that doesn't apply to every country.

Then again, a study out of two heavily left wing universities saying the US is an oligarchy has about as much weight as the taliban saying Europe is a christian fundamentalist state, and Japan is ruled by hindu's.

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

TheP4st (1164315) | about 2 months ago | (#47473677)

Nope you did (fortunately) not miss something about Canada becoming a part of the US. The study I referenced while concerning the US is pointing out quite a few points that are applicable to many other countries too, for example all of those are involved in the Trans-Pacific Partnership [wikipedia.org] a group that Canada is a part of.

Re:This is excellent timing given the upcoming T.P (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about 2 months ago | (#47478253)

Apparently I did. Otherwise Asia became the US going by your logic as well. And i we did become a part of the US, can you tell me where the cheap electronics are, and when I can find the prices for 1/4 to 1/2 of that compared up here in Canada.

CDN courts usually always side with the Charter (1)

future assassin (639396) | about 2 months ago | (#47472569)

Thats one things we got one our side. The courts most of the time will side with the citizen when it come to Charter of Rights, for now they have our backs. Now is even a better time since Harper has been pissing them off and even the Con judges are going agaist the party line.

Re:CDN courts usually always side with the Charter (1)

dryeo (100693) | about 2 months ago | (#47472869)

Luckily Harper has been having a hard time even finding qualified judges as extreme as his government.

Canada can not legally give away TPP privacy (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 2 months ago | (#47471803)

The TPP can not sell Canadian Citizens Constitutional Right to privacy.

It's not a bill.

It's in the Constitution.

In writing.

No government can sell that right to another country.

PERIOD.

(yes, I did take Canadian Law in grade 10, it was the best thing I ever did, other than Canadian Business Law later on, and, yes, my brother passed the BC bar and got his LLD from UBC)

Re:Canada can not legally give away TPP privacy (1)

sedmonds (94908) | about 2 months ago | (#47471853)

Privacy isn't written into the Constitution. It's been read into the Constitution by the Supreme Court, mostly in relation to sections 7 and 8.

Re:Canada can not legally give away TPP privacy (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 2 months ago | (#47472397)

Even if you do get the courts protection recall the "“antagonizing” the federal government and police if they shared too much information about authorities snooping their customers’ personal data" aspect.
"Telecom giants worried about ‘antagonizing’ feds on lawful access: documents" (May 21 2014)
http://www.thestar.com/news/ca... [thestar.com]

It won't last. (1)

uCallHimDrJ0NES (2546640) | about 2 months ago | (#47471347)

When the ISP is forcibly shown who their real customers are, they will tow the line. Nice marketing play, though.

Re:It won't last. (3, Informative)

uCallHimDrJ0NES (2546640) | about 2 months ago | (#47471351)

Darn it! Toe the line. Toe the line. HOLD THE LINE!!!!!!!

Me do speak English.

Re:It won't last. (1)

dryeo (100693) | about 2 months ago | (#47471877)

Yes, the current government has already done things like threaten to bring Verizon into the country and limit their access to spectrum auctions to make sure these companies do what our glorious leaders wants, I mean to promote competition.

All Canadian Citizens have this Right (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 2 months ago | (#47471785)

Including those residing in countries with International Data Treaties with Canada.

Yes, that means the USA and the EU.

Privacy. It's what's for Breakfast, Lunch, and Supper.

Would you like some Poutine with that back bacon, American Privacy Ignorers?

Re:All Canadian Citizens have this Right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47471997)

FYI That's what we (Canadians) call Canadian bacon, in Canada bacon is bacon, its only the USA that insults the name of bacon by calling fried ham Canadian bacon

Re:All Canadian Citizens have this Right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47473995)

Too funny.

I am a Canadian who has lived in the US for several years.
One day i went to the grocery store and saw packages of "Canadian Bacon" for sale. For the life of me could not figure out what it was, it looked like lunch meat ham but cut in much smaller "circles" then normal. I suppose you were suppose to "fry" it?

The key point that in my 30+ years of living in Canada i had not seen such a thing.

As you said, in Canada bacon is just bacon.

Getting a warrant (1)

jodido (1052890) | about 2 months ago | (#47471887)

Exactly how difficult, on a scale of say one to ten, do you think it will be for the Canadian cops to get warrants?

Re:Getting a warrant (1)

Kernel Kurtz (182424) | about 2 months ago | (#47472365)

It's difficulty will be on a scale of one to ten how reasonable it is.

"In 2011, the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association reported to Canada's privacy commissioner its members received 1.2 million requests for customer information in one year and disclosed information about 780,000 customers. http://www.cbc.ca/m/touch/news... [www.cbc.ca] "

I'm betting on a sizable dent in those numbers.

Re:Getting a warrant (1)

jodido (1052890) | about 2 months ago | (#47474121)

How sweet that you trust the courts to defend your rights. When is your sixth birthday, this year or next?

Re:Getting a warrant (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47473663)

That's sort of not the point. Even if Canadian judges just say "yes" without even looking at the case, it still means the cop's got to get of his arse and get down the court to get the warrant. The judge still needs to put some ink on his quill and sign the paperwork, and then the cop's got to take that bit of paper down to the Rogers office and serve it.

It's not about whether it can be done, but it makes the right people "feel the pain" of having to do it. Someone will get tired of it and maybe will either cut down the fishing expeditions, or else they'll push for some sort of blanket approval. The former is a good thing, the latter requires some degree of public exposure, which may or may not go the way they might want.

Re:Getting a warrant (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47473711)

Well. past experience at a former job I had.
Middle of the night warrant request.
The had to have a third party. So what would happen is the officer would call me to set up a call between him and a judge. (PS waking up a judge at 3am, he is not happy, you better be fucking sure you really have cause for that warrant) The police officer would talk to the judge while being recorded. Provide his information, the judge would usually ask a couple of questions and approve/disapprove the warrant.

If you have cause In Canada or the US you will get your warrant to approve your information request.

As a Canadian citizen I'm ok with this. To me this is how it should be done.

Privacy like freedom of speech does not mean you can do or say anything and everything you want.

Changing the law (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47472125)

... effectively kills the Canadian government's efforts ...

So the government can't pass a law cancelling the precedent or case law? I think that has happened in my country a few times.

Re:Changing the law (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 2 months ago | (#47472423)

You just go further up/down the network and explore options in telco or building places like a classic Meet-me-room https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]
Over time a nice international network layer will fall out that is peered to lower domestic interconnect fees? International sounds like fair game?

Re:Changing the law (1)

RobbieCrash (834439) | about 2 months ago | (#47472675)

Not in my understanding.

The recent supreme court decision [lexum.com] related to this announcement and several others recently indicate that according to our Charter of Rights and Freedoms [wikipedia.org] , we're guaranteed the right to privacy, and our actions online have a reasonable expectation of privacy and annonymity. Constitutionally speaking, we're safe online from unreasonable (unwarranted) search, it's not an issue of *a* law, it's an issue of the supreme law of the land. The government could try to amend our Charter to remove, or reduce this right, but that's a complicated process [wikipedia.org] .

Any laws passed here have to be constitutionally sound, and lately the supreme court here has been coming down on what many are seeing as government overreach.

About time (1)

robstout (2873439) | about 2 months ago | (#47472221)

I love to hear it when places actually stand up for due process.

Give Rogers credit (1)

Livius (318358) | about 2 months ago | (#47472239)

I have to applaud Rogers for doing the right thing.

This may even be a first for them, seeing as they are one of the most evil corporations ever created.

Re:Give Rogers credit (1)

jenningsthecat (1525947) | about 2 months ago | (#47472447)

Rogers... one of the most evil corporations ever created.

I'm a Canadian, and I used to be a Rogers customer. Yes, they are evil, but they're nowhere near the top of the evilness ladder. Monsanto, Big Tobacco, and Big Pharma make companies like Rogers look positively saintly by comparison.

Re:Give Rogers credit (1)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 months ago | (#47472469)

"Big Pharma"?

Not really that big... in Canada.

Re:Give Rogers credit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47474297)

Rhone-Poulanc for one.

Teksavvy (1)

buckfeta2014 (3700011) | about 2 months ago | (#47472467)

If I'm not mistaken, Voltage is still suing (re: subscriber info) Teksavvy for its customers pirating Hurt Locker or some shit...

You can have all the privacy you want.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47474195)

But of course we will SELL your information to our corporate partners, and will most certainly use it to bilk you for every dollar you have. But we won't hand it over to the police, don't worry.

I am worried that this is news (1)

houghi (78078) | about 2 months ago | (#47476587)

The deenition of news is "Mad bites dog." If common sense becomes the news, you know that things are messed up.

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