Christopher Parsons

Articles

Pandemic Privacy: A Preliminary Analysis of Collection Technologies, Data Collection Laws, and Legislative Reform during COVID-19

In this report, we undertake a preliminary comparative analysis of how different information technologies were mobilized in response to COVID-19 to collect data, the extent to which Canadian laws impeded the response to COVID-19, and the potential consequences of reforming data protection or privacy laws to enable more expansive data collection, use, or disclosure of personal information in future health emergencies.

Canada’s Proposed Privacy Law Reforms Are Not Enough: A Path to Improving Organizational Transparency and Accountability

Given our experiences, we have specific recommendations for how any federal commercial privacy legislation must be amended to better protect individuals from the predations and power of private organizations. In making our recommendations we have chosen to focus almost exclusively on the Openness and Transparency, Access to and Amendment of Personal Information, and Whistleblower sections of Bill C-11.

Canada’s New and Irresponsible Encryption Policy: How the Government of Canada’s New Policy Threatens Charter Rights, Cybersecurity, Economic Growth, and Foreign Policy

The proposed rationales for weakening encryption would exchange marginal gains in limited investigative situations for significant loses with regards to Canadians’ abilities to exercise their rights and freedoms while simultaneously undermining cybersecurity, economic development, and foreign affairs. Minister Goodale should stop calling persons with well-considered policy positions on the importance of enabling the availability of strong encryption as supporters of child abusers, and get on with his job of trying to keep Canadians safe instead of endangering them with his irresponsible and dangerous encryption policy.

The Predator in Your Pocket: A Multidisciplinary Assessment of the Stalkerware Application Industry

This report was collaboratively written by researchers from computer science, political science, criminology, law, and journalism studies. As befits their expertise, the report is divided into several parts, with each focusing on specific aspects of the consumer spyware ecosystem, which includes: technical elements associated stalkerware applications, stalkerware companies’ marketing activities and public policies, and these companies’ compliance with Canadian federal commercial privacy legislation.

Government’s Defence of Proposed CSE Act Falls Short

In this post, we evaluate the Government’s explanation of some of the more problematic elements of Bill C-59 in its briefing notes. We ultimately conclude that while the government’s briefing material provides insight into some of the ways that the CSE might act following the passage of the CSE Act, the material itself does not resolve our concerns with the CSE Act.