Our Office is pleased to be hosting the 49th meeting of the “Berlin Group”, more formally known as the International Working Group on Data Protection in Telecommunications, which takes place today and tomorrow, in Montreal. This is the first time that this Group has met in Canada. Participants in the meeting, representing more than 20 international data protection and privacy authorities, will be focusing on privacy-related topics such as electronic payments, vehicle event data recorders and locational privacy.
The Berlin Group was established in 1983 by the Berlin Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information. The Group has, through its continuing examination of the data protection and privacy implications of telecommunications-based systems and services, developed into what the current Chairman and Berlin Commissioner, Dr. Alexander Dix, refers to as “an early warning system monitoring the risks arising from new technological developments, but at the same time, highlighting the opportunities of a privacy-friendly network architecture”.
The Group takes a very inclusive approach on what constitutes a telecommunications-based system or service. Over the years, this has resulted in a detailed examination of a broad range of subjects, everything from search engines and location-based services to social network services and road pricing systems.