Hard-hitting video released that highlights how Peter MacKay’s online spying legislation would let a range of government officials spy on law-abiding Canadians without oversight
March 5, 2014
Bill C-13 was introduced by Justice Minister Peter MacKay last fall. Minister MacKay claimed the bill was focused on tackling cyberbullying, but privacy experts were quick to point out that just a few pages of the bill cover cyberbullying, while 65 pages were lifted straight from Vic Toews’ failed online spying Bill C-30. OpenMedia.ca led the successful 150,000-strong campaign that defeated Bill C-30, and is now rallying Canadians to defeat the new Bill C-13.
The new video is being launched today on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and OpenMedia.ca’s website. It highlights how the legislation will give a wide range of authorities access to the private lives of law-abiding Canadians, without any suspicion of wrong-doing. Bill C-13 would let those authorities create detailed profiles of Canadians based on who they talk to and what they say and do online. The legislation also provides immunity to telecom providers who hand over the private information of Canadians without a warrant.
“We’re launching this video today to draw attention to how this dangerous legislation would throw the door wide open to government spying on innocent Canadians,” says Steve Anderson, Executive Director of OpenMedia.ca. “Justice Minister Peter MacKay is trying to cover the government’s online spying tracks by pushing a bill through Parliament that will actually provide immunity to telecom companies who have shared your sensitive private data without a warrant.”
Anderson continued: “That means that if you are the victim of cyber criminals, identity theft, or even wrongly targeted by police because your Internet or cell phone provider handed over your information without cause you will have little recourse. In fact, you probably won’t even be notified if you private data has been breached. This irresponsible legislation clearly shouldn’t go forward. We know from experience how effective viral videos like this can be - that’s why it’s important we each spread the word by sharing this video with our friends and family today.”
Bill C-13 is currently at the Second Reading stage in the House of Commons. The Official Opposition is supporting OpenMedia.ca’s call for the Bill to be split - so that important measures to tackle cyberbullying can be dealt with separately from the online spying bill.
Canadians can keep in touch with the campaign against Bill C-13 by joining the Protect Our Privacy Coalition at http://OurPrivacy.ca. The Coalition includes over 50 major organizations and over a dozen academic experts and is calling for effective legal measures to protect Canadians’ privacy from government spies.
OpenMedia.ca is a network of people and organizations working to safeguard the possibilities of the open Internet. We work toward informed and participatory digital policy.
Through campaigns such as StopTheMeter.ca and StopSpying.ca, OpenMedia.ca has engaged over half-a-million Canadians, and has influenced public policy and federal law.
About OpenMedia.ca’s privacy campaign
OpenMedia.ca led the successful StopSpying.ca campaign that forced the government to back down on its plans to introduce a costly, invasive, and warrantless online spying law (Bill C-30). Nearly 150,000 Canadians took part in the campaign. To learn more, see this infographic.
On October 10, 2013 OpenMedia.ca collaborated with over 40 major organizations and over a dozen academic experts to form the Protect Our Privacy Coalition, which is the largest pro-privacy coalition in Canadian history. The Coalition is calling for effective legal measures to protect the privacy of every resident of Canada against intrusion by government entities.
OpenMedia.ca and the BC Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) recently announced they will work together to put a stop to illegal government surveillance against law-abiding Canadians. OpenMedia.ca has launched a national campaign encouraging Canadians to support a BCCLA legal action which aims to stop illegal spying by challenging the constitutionality of the government’s warrantless collection of data on Canadians’ everyday Internet use.
Communications Manager, OpenMedia.ca
- Bill C-13 would let authorities obtain private information without a warrant. Source: Michael Geist
- Supposed “cyberbullying” legislation will erode the privacy of Canadians. Source: OpenMedia.ca
- Canada's Lawful Access Bill Appears to Have Contained a Provision to Enable PRISM-Style Surveillance Source: Michael Geist
- Lawful Access back on the agenda this Fall? - Michael Geist.
- Data breach protocols deficient in 9 federal departments, watchdog finds. - [Source: CBC News]
- Internet Law expert Michael Geist on why Canadians should be concerned about government spying.
- In this article, The Globe and Mail describes the revelations about Canadian government spying as “disturbing and unacceptable”
- This document, obtained by The Globe through Access to Information, shows how Minister MacKay authorized a top secret program to data-mine global ‘metadata’ in 2011.
OpenMedia works to keep the Internet open, affordable, and surveillance-free. We create community-driven campaigns to engage, educate, and empower people to safeguard the Internet.
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