Vic Toews must have thought George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four police state crusade against thinking and individuality needed implementation in Canada.
Thankfully, Federal Privacy Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart tried to smarten up Toews and Stephen Harper – good luck there, Jennifer – when she wrote the Harper government Thursday to register her “deep concerns” about these new surveillance powers and note that it (the Harper Government) has so far failed to demonstrate why this is the best course of action.
According to the Globe and Mail, Public Safety Minister Vic Toews has confirmed in recent weeks that the Conservatives intend to revive legislation they did not manage to pass as a minority government – bills that would give police new capabilities to conduct electronic surveillance in the Internet age.
The changes eyed by the Tories, spread out over three bills in the last Parliament, would also have given police greater power to obtain data gathered by Internet service providers by requiring Internet service providers to install surveillance technology on their networks.
It also would have forced mandatory disclosure of customer information on demand and without court oversight. This would obliged all ISPs to surrender customer details to the police including names, addresses, email address as well as the unique identifier number that every computer connection to the Internet is assigned.
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