Ontario’s Info and Privateness Commissioner (Patricia Kosseim) has launched her 2021 annual report. The report displays on the shift in the direction of an more and more digital society over the course of the previous 12 months and describes the IPC’s function in defending folks’s privateness whereas supporting innovation in our province. Along with reporting on the IPC’s adjudication of complaints, the report outlined the IPC’s efforts to conduct public training and outreach in addition to recommendation and consultations in 4 strategic areas:
Privateness and Transparency in a Trendy Authorities
This precedence is centered on bettering folks’s privateness and entry rights by guaranteeing that public establishments have applicable frameworks in place to control digital know-how. The IPC suggested authorities on the event of privateness ideas to tell the governance of digital applied sciences reminiscent of Ontario’s Digital Id Program, the Reliable Synthetic Intelligence Framework and the institution of a provincial information authority. Priorities included minimizing information assortment, growing a mannequin which permits people to manage the usage of their private info and utilizing synthetic intelligence in a way that maintains democratic ideas and particular person rights. Different themes included guaranteeing that initiatives are inclusive and accessible throughout financial, social, bodily or administrative boundaries and pairing information sharing powers with enhanced privateness protections reminiscent of necessary privateness influence assessments and breach reporting.
Belief in Digital Well being
The aim of this precedence is to advertise confidence within the digital well being care system by encouraging custodians to respect the privateness and entry rights of Ontarians, creating assets that information custodians via latest legislative and regulatory modifications to PHIPA that had been made to facilitate the supply of digital well being companies and supporting the usage of private well being info for analysis and analytics in a way that serves the general public good.
In 2021, the IPC consulted on the event of the federal government’s necessary proof of vaccination certificates program and the implementation of digital care options, together with vendor choice, consent processes and safeguards for digital care visits. It additionally accomplished an preliminary evaluate of Ontario Well being as a prescribed group underneath PHIPA, which is important to the event of a provincial digital well being report system. Consultations will proceed in 2022 to deal with the IPC’s suggestions. Lastly, the IPC revised the Handbook for the Evaluation and Approval of Prescribed Individuals and Prescribed Entities, a doc that’s used to information the evaluate of entities entrusted with giant volumes of private well being info or who’ve vital duties underneath PHIPA and who accomplish that with out consent for the good thing about the general public, topic to scrutiny of their practices each three years.
Though the advances in well being privateness had been vital in 2021, various the amendments to Ontario’s Private Well being Info Safety Act haven’t but taken impact, for instance: the IPC’s powers to impose financial penalties towards people and organizations for severe breaches of PHIPA. The IPC continues to advocate for the main points of this scheme to be set out in rules in order that it may impose actual penalties on dangerous actors who undermine Ontarians’ confidence within the well being system.
Helpful digital well being assets developed by the IPC in 2021:
- Privateness and Safety Concerns for Digital Well being Care Visits
- Digital Well being underneath PHIPA: Chosen Overview
- From the bedside to the board: Constructing a tradition of privateness and safety in well being establishments
- Use and Disclosure of Private Well being Info for Broader Public Well being Functions
- Decision on information sharing for the general public good
Kids and Youth in a Digital World
This precedence is about defending Ontario’s kids and youth in an setting the place digitization is threatening their privateness, autonomy and well-being at an growing charge. The aim is to advertise privateness literacy amongst kids and youth and defend their entry and privateness rights by holding establishments accountable for shielding the youngsters and youth they serve. In 2021, the IPC developed a webinar for Ontario educators about defending pupil privateness rights, a set of video games and actions for youths known as “Privateness Pursuit!” and a podcast known as “Instructing youngsters about privateness”. The IPC additionally issued its first choices underneath Half X of the Youngster, Youth and Household Providers Act and sponsored a decision on the World Privateness Meeting, which represents a dedication to selling the digital rights of youngsters and youth, in collaboration with stakeholders, coverage makers and different information safety authorities. Lastly, the IPC advocated for kids’s information rights within the personal sector through a White Paper on Modernizing Privateness in Ontario.
Subsequent-Era Legislation Enforcement
This precedence is targeted on constructing public belief in regulation enforcement by establishing tips for the usage of know-how in order that entry and privateness rights are preserved at the side of enhancements to operational effectivity and enhanced public security. Among the many matters for 2021 had been the enlargement of closed-circuit tv methods, and new community-based approaches to policing (such because the toolkit for cellular disaster response groups). The IPC held a webcast dialogue panel on the function of accountability and transparency in constructing public belief in regulation enforcement and launched draft tips to infuse authorized controls and privateness protections to reduce intrusiveness in the usage of facial recognition know-how by police. Consultations on the finalization of the rules will proceed in 2022.
You’ll be able to entry the 2021 Annual Report and associated Statistical Reviews right here.