Another week, another revelation originating from the seemingly unlimited trove of Edward Snowden documents. Last week, the CBC reported that Canada was among several countries whose surveillance agencies actively exploited security vulnerabilities in a popular mobile web browser used by hundreds of millions of people.
Today [June 3, 2015] is “Cellphone Freedom Day”, the day that most Canadian consumers can say goodbye to three year cellphone contracts. With the Federal Court of Appeal recentlyrejecting an attempt by the major carriers to stop the retroactive applicability of wireless code as of June 3rd (the two year anniversary of the code), consumers with cellphones that have run for more than 24 months can now cancel their contracts without penalty.
The competitiveness of Canadian wireless services has been the source of an ongoing and contentious debate for years. Last week, Canada’s telecom regulator concluded that there is a competitiveness problem, yet in a decision surprisingly applauded by many groups, declined to use much of its regulatory toolkit to address the problem. Instead, it placed a big bet on the prospect of a smaller wireless carrier somehow emerging as a fourth national player.
For the past few months, I’ve received daily emails from people who have been sent a copyright infringement notification as part of Canada’s notice-and-notice system. Most of the notifications come from CEG-TEK, a U.S.-based anti-piracy firm.
As the launch of the Canadian anti-spam law neared last spring, critics warned that enforcement was likely to present an enormous challenge. Citing the global nature of the Internet and the millions of spam messages sent each day, many argued that enforcement bodies such as the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission and the Competition Bureau were ill-suited to combating the problem.
The Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security will hold its clause-by-clause review of Bill C-51, the Anti-Terrorism bill, this morning. The government is expected to introduce several modest amendments thatexperts note do little to address some of the core concerns with the bill.
Treasury Board President Tony Clement unveiled the latest version of his Open Government Action Plan last month, continuing a process that has seen some important initiatives to make government data such as statistical information and mapping data publicly available in open formats free from restrictive licenses.
The Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights continues its study later today [November 26, 2014] on Bill C-13, the cyber-bullying/lawful access bill that has already passed the House of Commons and seems certain to clear the Senate shortly.
The Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs
began its hearings on Bill C-13, the lawful access/cyberbullying bill last week with an appearance from several law enforcement representatives.