Friday, November 23, 2007

New Federal Identity Theft Bill Introduced in House of Commons

The federal government has introduced Bill C-27 - An Act to amend the Criminal Code (identity theft and related misconduct) .

According to the Justice Canada press release:

"The misuse of another person's identity information, generally referred to as identity fraud, is covered by current offences in the Criminal Code , such as personation and forgery. But the preparatory steps of collecting, possessing and trafficking in identity information are generally not captured by existing offences. The proposed legislation would create three new offences directly targeting aspects of the identity theft problem, all subject to five-year maximum sentences:

  • obtaining or possessing identity information with intent to use it to commit certain crimes;
  • trafficking in identity information with knowledge of or recklessness as to its intended use in the commission of certain crime;
  • and unlawfully possessing and trafficking in government-issued identity documents."
Commentary and background:
  • University of Ottawa law professor Michael Geist: "This is good and long overdue legislation. It is not a complete solution, however. While penalties for identity theft are needed, Canada also needs to take steps to allow Canadians to self-protect against identity theft, to create incentives for companies to safeguard personal information against the prospect of identity theft, and to address some of the activities used to facilitate identity theft. There are two obvious issues that should be addressed. First, anti-spam legislation, which would include phishing and spyware, is similarly long overdue. Second, Canada needs a mandatory security breach notification law so that Canadians are advised when their personal information may be at heightened risk for identity theft."
  • Privacy Commissioner of Canada Statement on Government Identity Theft Measures: "I welcome these measures, but feel the government must move further in addressing what has become an increasingly global problem. Some countries have accused Canada of being a harbour for spammers – people who attempt to hoax individuals around the world of their personal information. With this information, these fraudsters acquire goods online and in real life, as well as steal the identities of their victims. We remain the only G-8 country without anti-spam legislation. I am encouraged to hear that the government is considering taking action on this far-reaching problem."
  • Tory legislation to target identity theft (TV interview with David Fraser, privacy law specialist)
  • Identity theft resources from the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic at the University of Ottawa

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 12:28 pm


Anonymous Steve Cabouli said...

I do agree with what 'Privacy Commissioner of Canada Statement on Government Identity Theft Measures' has said. Identity theft can become a global problem. As the world has become a global village, now it is easy for identity theft criminals to get hold of other persons identity.

5:21 am  

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