Who knew the CSA was into privacy promotion? Lightbulbs, toasters yes! But privacy?
It’s great to see they promote/educate companies as to the idea of privacy and how to handle consumer information…BUT I hope that companies don’t miss the point that there are LAWS compelling correct treatment of private information and that it isn’t just the CSA “voluntary code”.
Many companies created “privacy Officer” positions before the new privacy laws came into effect to be ready. Like many things when it’s new people get all excited, educated and then promptly relax, forget and go back to the old policies and procedures.
Of course when you have the 9/11 and anti-terrorist hysteria as justification for even more intrusive policies than BEFORE the privacy laws came into effect, kinda makes you wonder…
As always it’s up to the individual to jealously guard their own privacy, and if so inclined, complain and hold the violating employee, employers and government agents accountable, only then we’d all be better off.
The Canadian Standards Association’s Model Code for the Protection of Personal Information

Many Canadian companies have implemented voluntary codes to safeguard their customers’ privacy rights. Such codes are based on the premise that clients’ personal information should not be misused, and that individuals should have access to their own personal information.

Voluntary codes are not law and don’t let anyone fool you that the laws are just guidelines…

In 1996, the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) developed a voluntary code based on the work of the Guidelines Governing the Protection of Privacy and Transborder Flows of Personal Data, created by the international Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The CSA’s version, its Model Code for the Protection of Personal Information, has been endorsed by many Canadian companies as the national standard on privacy protection.

The ten basic principles of the Code are:

  1. Accountability
    An organization is responsible for personal information under its control and shall designate an individual or individuals who are accountable for the organization’s compliance with the following principles.
  2. Identifying Purposes
    The purposes for which personal information is collected shall be identified by the organization at or before the time the information is collected.
  3. Consent
    The knowledge and consent of the individual are required for the collection, use, or disclosure of personal information, except where inappropriate.
  4. Limiting Collection
    The collection of personal information shall be limited to that which is necessary for the purposes identified by the organization. Information shall be collected by fair and lawful means.
  5. Limiting Use, Disclosure and Retention
    Personal information shall not be used or disclosed for purposes other than those for which it was collected, except with the consent of the individual or as required by law. Personal information shall be retained only as long as necessary for the fulfillment of those purposes.
  6. Accuracy
    Personal information shall be as accurate, complete and up-to-date as is necessary for the purpose for which it is used.
  7. Safeguards
    Personal information shall be protected by security safeguards appropriate to the sensitivity of the information.
  8. Openness
    An organization shall make readily available to individuals specific information about its policies and practices relating to the management of personal information.
  9. Individual Access
    Upon request, an individual shall be informed of the existence, use, and disclosure of his or her personal information, and shall be given access to that information. An individual shall be able to challenge the accuracy and completeness of the information and have it amended as appropriate.
  10. Challenging Compliance
    An individual shall be able to address a challenge concerning compliance with the above principles to the designate individual or individuals accountable for the organization’s compliance.

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