Everybody Is Jumping on the Privacy Update Bandwagon: Alberta Consulting on Critical Updates to its Privacy Laws

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The province of Alberta has joined the Canadian Federal Government and a number of the other Canadian provinces, proposing to update its privacy laws. Currently, Alberta’s legal privacy framework includes the Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) and the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIP). These laws govern the collection, use, and disclosure of personal information of residents of Alberta.

In Alberta, personal information can include, for example, a person’s name, home, or business address, telephone number, ethnicity, age, gender identity, marital or family status, and identifying numbers, such as a driver’s license number.

As part of this process, the Ministry of Service Alberta (the “Ministry of Service” ) has launched an online consultation that will run until August 20, 2021, seeking stakeholder input on a number of privacy-related issues, including:

  • Access to and control of one’s personal information when interacting with government and private sector organizations;
  • The importance of clear and informed consent, data portability, and the right to be forgotten;
  • The need for greater transparency, such as plain language privacy statements;
  • The desire for legal requirements for collecting, using, and disclosing de-identified data; and
  • Enhancing government oversight to ensure public and private sector organizations protect personal information as new technologies emerge.

The Ministry will use the information collected during the consultation to identify and support its efforts to strengthen privacy protections for residents of the province of Alberta.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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