Special Report to Parliament - page 7

3
What has been the
Impact on Privacy?
The critical impact of these changes upon
privacy comes from the unprecedented
importance and availability of personal
information. Intelligence activities are now
turned towards individuals dispersed within the
general population
.
3
As a result, the manner of
conducting those activities can cast a wide net.
Open source information such as that found on
social networking sites is swept up
electronically and has the potential to become
the predominant collection channel. However,
information online is often shared with an
expectation of privacy – whether that is
reasonable to expect or not – and moreover,
can be inaccurate. As other commentators
have remarked, the Internet has eradicated
neat territorial distinctions, sectorial boundaries
and jurisdictional remits when it comes to data
collection, information sharing and intelligence
analysis, while amplifying intelligence gathering
capacity by orders of magnitude.
4
Moreover,
the private sector, namely, the
telecommunications sector, is therefore
increasingly tasked directly with intelligence
gathering or exploited for those purposes.
Canada’s intelligence agencies have been
drawn increasingly into domestic domains (e.g.
to combat local radicalization or financial
sponsorship of violent movements).
3
Rudner, Martin, “Canada’s Communications Security
Establishment, Signals Intelligence and counter-
terrorism” from Intelligence and National Security, 22:4
(2007), pp. 473-490.
4
Wright, Andrea, “Security Intelligence: New Challenges
for Democratic Control” (2007) for 2007 European
Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) Conference.
The potential for intrusion upon privacy within
this new context is such that it calls for
commensurate privacy protection.
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