article-aa

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) and the U.K.’s Information Commissioner’s Office will focus on the facial recognition firm’s use of photos scraped from websites and social media platforms as well as biometric information. (The Logic)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: Clearview CEO Hoan Ton-That insists his company has only used “publicly available information.” But LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube have all sent cease-and-desist letters to the firm, arguing that it violates their terms of service. Facebook has also told it to stop. In Canada, the courts have largely dealt with scraping as a copyright issue rather than a privacy matter. Clearview confirmed on Monday it was exiting the country, amid an investigation by the federal, Alberta, B.C. and Quebec privacy commissioners into whether the firm was collecting and using residents’ personal information without their consent; there’s typically no individual approval stage in the scraping process. International cooperation is a priority for the federal privacy commissioner’s office, and it conducted a joint probe of Ashley Madison with the OAIC, spokesperson Vito Pilieci said. He declined to say whether the regulators were collaborating on Clearview, since the investigation is ongoing.

article-aa

Europe’s antitrust regulator is preparing to launch a four-month probe into Google’s US$2.1-billion acquisition of Fitbit, unless the Alphabet subsidiary makes decisions to address privacy and competition concerns, such as by signing a binding pledge to not use Fitbit’s health and wellness data for advertising. Google has until July 13 to make concessions. (Reuters)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: Last week the EU regulator sent 60-page questionnaires to Google and Fitbit’s rivals, asking them to assess how the acquisition will affect the digital health-care space. This concern has been shared among advocacy groups, which have warned that if the merger is approved, Google could exploit Fitbit’s data-collection capabilities to strengthen its online advertising business. Google said last year that it would not use Fitbit’s data for ads. A decision from EU antitrust regulators on whether or not to clear the deal is expected by July 20. Australian regulators are probing the acquisition over similar concerns, with a decision expected August 13.

article-aa

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Justice Department are investigating allegations made by the Center for Digital Democracy and Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, among others, that the short-video platform failed to delete videos and personal information about users 13 and younger. (Reuters)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: In February 2019, the FTC alleged that TikTok (then known as Musical.ly) violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act by illegally collecting information from children. As part of its US$5.7-million settlement with the FTC—the largest of its type in the commission’s history—its operators agreed “to take offline all videos made by children under the age of 13.” U.S. lawmakers have also raised national security concerns over TikTok’s handling of user data.

article-aa

The federal privacy commissioner announced that the company is indefinitely suspending its contract with the RCMP, which was its last remaining client in Canada, in response to an ongoing investigation by federal and provincial government privacy watchdogs. (The Logic)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: Clearview AI offers a database of more than three billion photos through which users—which have included dozens of Canadian police forces—can find people’s names and home addresses. The investigation, which includes privacy watchdogs in Quebec, British Columbia and Alberta, is looking into Clearview AI’s collection of data on Canadians, and its deletion. In June, the company allowed users from some countries to request their data be deleted, but Canada was not among them. The privacy watchdogs are also looking to create guidelines for law enforcement on the use of biometric technology, including facial recognition.

article-aa

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada and its counterparts in Quebec, British Columbia and Alberta will examine whether the company obtains meaningful consent from users when collecting and using their data to build user profiles. (The Logic)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: The investigation comes on the heels of a Financial Post investigation into the Tim Hortons app. Journalist James McLeod found the app was often tracking his movements—and sending the ensuing data to a third-party company to analyze—even when the app wasn’t open on his phone. The company said it will stop its detailed location tracking.

article-aa

“LifeLabs exposed British Columbians, along with millions of other Canadians, to potential identity theft, financial loss and reputational harm,” B.C. information and privacy commissioner Michael McEvoy said in a statement regarding a joint investigation into a breach last year at the laboratory-testing company. (CBC News)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: LifeLabs revealed last December that hackers had gained access to the personal information of up to 15 million customers in Ontario and B.C. that fall, and that the company was forced to pay a ransom to retrieve and secure the data. The privacy commissioners of both provinces have instructed LifeLabs to strengthen its security policies, finding that it collected more personal information than “reasonably necessary.” The company has reportedly started to do that by hiring a chief privacy officer and chief information officer; it has also hired Deloitte Canada to evaluate its response to the ransomware cyberattack. In their statements, the commissioners said the publication of their full report was being delayed by the company’s claim that the information provided to them for the investigation was confidential. “This investigation also reinforces the need for changes to B.C.’s laws that allow regulators to consider imposing financial penalties on companies that violate people’s privacy rights,” McEvoy said.

article-aa

The Alphabet subsidiary will have to pay the US$56 million issued by France’s data protection watchdog last year for not making it clear to Android users how the company collects and uses their data. (Bloomberg)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: The fine is the biggest to date under the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation implemented in May 2018 to improve transparency in how tech companies and websites process data by requiring users’ consent to use their information for targeted ads. While the fine is miniscule for a company of Google’s size, the greater impact will be in the company actually complying with the rules. “In light of this decision, we will now review what changes we need to make,” a Google spokesperson said in a statement.

article-aa

The antitrust watchdog determined that between August 2012 and June 2018, the social media giant gave users the impression that they could control the visibility of their personal information, but did not sufficiently limit third-party developers’ access. Facebook will also pay $500,000 in costs. “Although we do not agree with the Commissioner’s conclusions, we are resolving this matter by entering into a consent agreement and not contesting the conclusions for the purposes of this agreement,” said Facebook spokesperson Erin Taylor.  (The Logic)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: The settlement resolves one of the multiple investigations and studies of third-party developers’ access to Facebook data that regulators and policymakers in Ottawa launched following the 2018 Cambridge Analytica scandal. In July 2019, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission imposed a significantly larger penalty of US$5 billion over privacy issues including this one. Facebook is still battling Canada’s privacy commissioner in court, after the watchdog said the firm had not accepted the findings of its inquiry or agreed to implement its recommendations. Meanwhile, the company has added Rachel Curran, a former policy director to Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper, to its Canadian public policy team. Kevin Chan, previously an adviser to ex-Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff, leads the group.

article-aa

The commissioner had asked the court to rule that Facebook broke the law on how private firms can collect personal information in connection with its sharing of data with Cambridge Analytica. (The Canadian Press)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: This is the latest challenge by Facebook, which refused to implement the recommendations that the federal privacy commissioner made in its 2019 investigation into the firm’s practices. The request is an initial response. If the federal court does not accept the request, Facebook will need to file a more substantial response to the commissioner. The company followed a similar path in its relationship with Newfoundland and Labrador’s privacy commissioner. Earlier this month, that office said it had asked Facebook multiple times to remove personal medical information from its site, but the social media company declined.