I was honoured to be one of the speakers at the Halifax Internet Town Hall hosted at Dalhousie University this evening, sponsored by the Chebucto Community Net and Dalhousie Student Union. My portion of the proceedings -- surprise -- was about privacy. I only had ten minutes, so needed to be short and sweet.
I decided to focus my presentation on the abomination that is Bill C-47, in particular the provision that allows law enforcement to have wholesale access to customer information without a warrant. It is frankly appalling and should not be allowed to pass.
Look at this provision:
16. (1) Every telecommunications service provider shall provide a person designated under subsection (3), on his or her written request, with any information in the service provider’s possession or control respecting the name, address, telephone number and electronic mail address of any subscriber to any of the service provider’s telecommunications services and the Internet protocol address, mobile identification number, electronic serial number, local service provider identifier, international mobile equipment identity number, international mobile subscriber identity number and subscriber identity module card number that are associated with the subscriber’s service and equipment.
You can disagree on the finer aspects of whether an ISP should be permitted to match an IP address provided by the cops with the customer name and address information in their files. That's a reasonable debate. But I do not see any limitation in Section 16. There's no oversight. There's no real accountability. There's no nuance. All ISPs will be required to provide any (or all) of the following:
- telephone number,
- electronic mail address,
- Internet protocol address,
- mobile identification number,
- electronic serial number,
- local service provider identifier,
- international mobile equipment identity number,
- international mobile subscriber identity number and
- subscriber identity module card number
It doesn't have to be connected to a child exploitation investigation. Or a parking ticket. In fact, there's no requirement that there be an underlying lawful investigation. The police will be able to hand a list of names to the ISP and require all of the above information, for an unlimited number of targets.
This is appalling legislation and should not stand.
For other postings on this topic, check out my previous postings tagged Lawful Access.