Canadian Government Restricts Its Own Data Collection Usage reports NRM Creative Marketing
Private and public entities have very different rule sets
The new rule is the first comprehensive guideline since Ottawa went online nearly 20 years prior.
The rule does not cover the data that is available to the government through social media sites that are set up by individual departments, which operate beyond the boundaries of the federal policies set in place.
The new rules set guidelines for tracking visits to government websites that prohibit the government from profiling any individual's online activity by the tracking of the internet protocol address (IPA).
"Canadians live in a world of data. Many individuals do not realize how much information about them is collected by websites and used as a corporate asset," said the privacy assessment carried out by Treasury Board in advance of the new guidelines.
The policies came into effect at the end of January, however, departments have up until 2014 to ensure that the contracts they have set with third-party groups. The government is looking into ways to do the analysis for itself, rather than relying on third-party companies such as Google.
The regulation of privacy in the private and public is becoming a key issue for many, as more life is being handled online. There is a large difference between what a private company can do, and what a government body can do, when it comes to online data collection, suggests Martin Abrams.
"The private sector doesn't have the power to put people in jail, the private sector doesn't have the ability to cut off people's government benefits," Abrams said.
"The private sector doesn't have the ability to use information to target people who could be unfriendly to governments."
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