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Privacy Commissioner awards $371,590 to non-profit organizations for research into the privacy impact of emerging technologies

Ottawa, January 27, 2005 – The Privacy Commissioner of Canada, Jennifer Stoddart, is pleased to announce the awarding of $371,590, under the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada's (OPC) Contributions Program, launched in June 2004, to support non-profit organizations, including universities, advocacy organizations and trade associations in conducting research into the privacy impact of emerging technologies.

"Canadians are becoming increasingly aware of privacy threats in an age of global and inter-organizational transmission of personal information. This is the first time the Office of the OPC has launched a program to enhance knowledge in addressing those concerns, by building strong links between the research community and privacy rights practitioners in Canada," said Ms. Stoddart.

The Office was so impressed by the quality of the submissions that an additional $171,590, over and above the original $200,000 allotted, was allocated to the program to support the development of expertise in key areas of privacy and data protection, and to foster an understanding of the social value of privacy and the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) in addressing emerging issues.

"This program represents a milestone in the development of national privacy research capacity in Canada. I wish to thank each and every organization who applied to this program for their thought provoking and innovative proposals, said Ms. Stoddart.

Funded Projects

Canadian Marketing Association
Toronto, Ontario
Taking Privacy to the Next Level

Assess and develop privacy best practices to assist businesses in better handling customer personal information under PIPEDA

École nationale d'administration publique (ENAP)
Québec, Québec
Study on the use of video surveillance cameras in Canada

Perceptions, issues, privacy impact and best practices on the use of video surveillance

Queen's University
Kingston, Ontario
Location Technologies: Mobility, Surveillance and Privacy

Trends and stated and implicit purposes of technology with workers, consumers, travelers and citizens

The B.C. Freedom of Information and Privacy Association
Vancouver, British Columbia
PIPEDA & Identify Theft: Solutions for Protecting Canadians

Gap analysis on weaknesses in personal information management practices that lead to identity theft and policy recommendations for PIPEDA implementation

Universities of Alberta and Victoria
Edmonton, Alberta
Victoria, British Columbia
Electronic Health Records and PIPEDA

Implementation of PIPEDA in the health care sector and application to electronic health records in the primary care setting

University of Toronto
Toronto, Ontario
A review of Internet privacy statements and on-line practices

Evaluation of implementation of PIPEDA and privacy statements on the Internet by companies in the telecommunications, airline, banking and retail sectors

University of Victoria
Victoria, British Columbia
Location-Based Services: An Analysis of Privacy Implications in the Canadian Context

Privacy implications of geographic location-based services — issues raised and major challenges and guidance to encourage compliance

Option Consommateurs
Montréal, Québec
The challenge of consumer identification with new methods of electronic payment

Current and new proposed methods of identification of consumers for electronic payment and risk factors

Simon Fraser University
Vancouver, British Columbia
Privacy Rights and Prepaid Communications Services: Assessing the Anonymity Question

Justification and feasibility of regulatory measures to eliminate the sale of anonymous prepaid communications services in Canada

Dalhousie University
Halifax, Nova Scotia
An Analysis of Legal and Technological Privacy Implications of Radio Frequency Identification Technologies

Study of RFID technology and privacy impact and legal measures to protect privacy


David H. Flaherty, a prominent privacy expert and member of the Office's External Advisory Committee looks forward to the results of the projects.

"I commend the OPC on the selection of an impressive range of important research initiatives that will be a key factor in Canada's contribution to the global debate on how best to protect personal information in an age of privacy-invasive technologies," said Mr. Flaherty.

The funded projects are expected to be completed in 2005. The OPC intends to organize a national conference to assist in the dissemination of the results of this research.

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For more information, please contact:

Renée Couturier
Director, Public Education and Communications
Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada
Tel: (613) 995-0103

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