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Companies could face hefty fines under new Canadian privacy law – CBC.ca

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The federal government is threatening to impose fines that could run to millions of dollars on private companies that violate Canadians’ privacy.

Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains introduced the Digital Charter Implementation Act today — officially called an “Act to enact the Consumer Privacy Protection Act and the Personal Information and Data Protection Tribunal Act and to make consequential and related amendments to other Acts.” It represents one of the biggest shakeups in Canada’s privacy law in decades. 

If the bill passes, companies could face fines of up to five per cent of global revenue or $25 million — whichever is greater — for the most serious offences. Bains said the legislation provides for the heaviest fines among the G7 nations’ privacy laws.

“The fines are there to provide accountability,” Bains told reporters.

The legislation also would give the federal privacy commissioner order-making powers — something Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien has long asked for — including the ability to force an organization to comply and to order a company to stop collecting data or using personal information.

Bains said the commissioner also would be able to recommend fines to a new Personal Information and Data Protection Tribunal, which would levy administrative monetary penalties and hear appeals of orders issued under the new law.

According to the wording of a government press release, the legislation also would give Canadians the option of demanding that their personal online information be “destroyed”.

Consent rules

The federal government has been signalling a more user-friendly system since it first floated the idea of a digital charter.

if the draft legislation passes, companies would have to obtain consent from customers through plain language — not a long, jargon-filled legal document — before using their personal data.

The Canadian Internet Registration Authority, the not-for-profit agency that manages the .ca internet domain, praised the new bill.

WATCH | Bains explains how fines would be laid if companies contravene the new privacy legislation 

Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains tabled new privacy legislation today in the Commons. 1:25

“Trust is critical to the digital economy, and central to a well-functioning internet. Canadians must be able to trust that their personal data will be protected and not abused,” said CIRA president Byron Holland in a media statement.

“Companies that handle massive troves of personal data must be held accountable for protecting that data, be transparent about how they use it and face real consequences should they break the trust of their users.”

Conservative MP James Cumming, the party’s innovation, science and industry critic, said that if the Liberals truly cared about Canadians privacy rights they’d ban the Chinese telecom giant Huawei from operating in Canada.

“While other countries have taken decisive action to stand up for the privacy of their citizens and banned Huawei, the Trudeau Liberals have failed to make a decision and stand up for the privacy of Canadians. There is no excuse for this delay by the Trudeau government,” he wrote in a statement.

“When it comes to Liberal legislation, the devil is always in the details. Conservatives will review the legislation to ensure that it protects privacy without imposing burdensome regulations on small businesses who are struggling to keep their doors open during the second wave of the pandemic.”

Canada already has two privacy laws. The Privacy Act covers government agencies and federally regulated industries, while the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act applies to private-sector organizations.

Statistics Canada said that about 57 per cent of Canadians online reported experiencing a cyber-security incident in 2018.

WATCH | Bains on Privacy Commissioner’s powers

Industry Minister Navdeep Bains explains the new powers of investigation that the Privacy Commissioner will have under the new Consumer Privacy Protection Act. 0:43

The bill is a “big win for privacy in Canada,” said Laura Tribe, executive director of OpenMedia, which has long pushed for stronger laws.

“For years, people have been calling on the government to increase protections for our digital privacy, to no avail,” she said.
“As a result, protecting the data and privacy of Canadians has been an afterthought for many companies, knowing that there were no meaningful penalties or consequences for bad behaviour.”

The group noted the legislation says consent is not required when an organization lacks a direct relationship with a person, which could water down the protections.  

The bill is a step in the right direction, said Jim Balsillie, founder of the Centre for Digital Rights. “However, what seems to be missing is a clear recognition of privacy as a fundamental human right.”

Increased bureaucracy

Goldy Hyder, president of the Business Council of Canada, said the legislative proposals set out clear rules to protect consumers, promote innovation and strengthen Canadians’ confidence in the emerging digital economy.

B.C.’s Information and Privacy Commissioner Michael McEvoy told CBC News that while the bill is a good start, he has issues with how it limits a privacy commissioner’s authority to recommending to a tribunal that a company be fined for breaching the law.

“It seems to me there is no reason why the commissioner shouldn’t have the power to administer those fines — subject, of course, to the courts,” he said.

McEvoy said that requiring a tribunal to review a commissioner’s recommendation to impose a fine adds an extra layer of bureaucracy that puts people one step further away from getting justice.

He said he likes the provision in the proposed law that would require privacy companies to state in plain and easy-to-understand language how they collect information and how they use it.

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How to tell if you're flying on a Boeing Max 737 – Boing Boing

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I’m a nervous flyer to begin with, so the news that Boeing is putting its crash-prone Max 737 jet back into service fills me with Lovecraftian dread.

I would rather ride a goddamn burro across the continental United States that get on one of those things. “Don’t worry, we updated the software.” There is no modern statement less reassuring.

But, how can you tell if you’ve been slated to fly on one?

As Jalopnik notes, Reuters reports that some airlines may stop using the “Max” name, so all you’ll know is that you’re flying on some sort of 737. So maybe you could just check your booking to see what sort of plane you’re on? But airlines’ methods of ID vary, and of course, sometimes at the last second they need to swap out jets for unanticipated reasons of maintenance or weather-related delays.

The upshot is that, as Jalopnik notes, you might have to simply figure it out by looking at the jet you’re about to board. This assessment would come rather late to be of any prophylactic use, mind you, unless you’re willing to skip the flight at the last second when you discover you’re about to step onto the creditScore_xxbin32_init.exe of airplanes.

Anyway, here’s how to recognize a Max 737 when you see one:

If your booking information doesn’t note what kind of 737 you’ll be flying, you may be able to spot the naming on the nose, tail or landing gear doors. Some airlines with a high number of 737 MAX aircraft orders, like Southwest, have no prominent markings at all.

At the airport, you can also check the winglets at the end of the wings. The 737 MAX will often have winglets that extend both up and down. Other versions of the 737 often have winglets that extend only upward. However, as some airlines — like United — have upgraded older planes to use the newer winglets, this isn’t always a surefire way to determine 737 type, either.

If all else fails, look at the engines. The 737 MAX uses CFM International LEAP-1B engines.

These are physically larger and pushed forward compared with the CFM International CFM56-7 engines of the older 737NG. The LEAP-1B engines will also have serrated edges at the rear of the engines.

(That CC-2.0-licensed photo of a Max 737, by Edward Russell, comes courtesy Wikimedia)

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Trudeau warns COVID-19 vaccine will come later to Canada than other countries – National Post

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Article content continued

“The issue of domestic vaccine manufacturing supply was identified as an issue after the H1N1 pandemic,” she said. “This issue in and of itself should not have come as a surprise to the Prime Minister or to the Health Minister or to the Procurement Minister when looking at a COVID vaccine rollout plan.”

Andrew Casey, president and CEO of Biotech Canada an industry association, said the prime minister is partially right, especially with the leading candidates.

“For two of the three vaccines that we now know about, the Pfizer and the Moderna vaccines, those are mRNA vaccines, which there is no manufacturing for that in Canada,” he said. “In fact, it’s very limited around the world because it’s such a novel vaccine.”

The prime minister told the House that Canadians would be first in line to receive the vaccine

Casey said there is plenty of manufacturing capacity in Canada for making vaccines, but it uses different types of technology and can’t be easily switched to something different.

“One type of vaccine is like making wine and the other one is like making coke. Yes, they’re both put in bottles, and you can drink them with straws, but they’re very different processes.”

He said the manufacturers in Canada also have other orders they are processing for the flu and for childhood vaccinations and couldn’t just scrap that production for COVID even if the technology was interchangeable. Given Canada’s limitations, Casey said, buying access to as many doses as possible from other countries was a good move.

Casey said for large pharmaceutical companies it will take more than just money to build facilities in Canada and the government will have to think about investments in research, drug pricing and regulations structures and other issues.

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1 in 3 Toronto schools, nearly half of Brampton schools, have active COVID-19 cases – CityNews Toronto

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One in three Toronto public schools have an active case of COVID-19 – more than double the provincial average being touted by Ontario’s education minister as he promotes the government’s school safety strategy and the picture worsens at other boards in pandemic hot spots.

In Toronto’s public board, 35 per cent of schools, some 206 facilities, have at least one student or staff member who are reported as actively sick with COVID-19. Of Toronto’s Catholic schools, 40 per cent – or 79 institutions — have active cases. In Brampton, 48 per cent of all schools, both public and Catholic, have active cases.

Toronto and Peel are in lockdown so it’s no surprise they have more cases than the provincial average, but the premier has acknowledged it’s concerning.

“It is definitely setting off alarm bells,” Premier Doug Ford said at a press conference Tuesday.

The government has consistently said it is safer for students to be in school, and that the priority is to keep them open. It has never mentioned that cases in locked-down regions are significantly higher than the provincial average, which is 14.6 percent. Four schools are currently closed due to outbreaks.

Education Minister Stephen Lecce stood in the legislature Monday and insisted schools were safe.

“Parents want the facts. Here’s a fact that I think would instill a level of confidence: if they knew that 99.95% of students are COVID-19-free, that 99.92% of staff are COVID-19-free, that 99.7% of staff have never had COVID-19,” said Lecce. “Our leadership in public health and our school boards are working together to flatten this curve, to reduce the risk and to keep our kids safe, and that is a good thing we should celebrate in this province”

In Brampton, 61 public schools and 28 Catholic schools are reporting 122 and 89 cases, respectively. In the public board, 51 schools beyond Brampton are reporting a further 78 cases. Of those, 46 schools are in Mississauga, four schools are in Caledon, and one is in Bolton.

In the Dufferin-Peel Catholic board, 37 schools outside of Brampton are reporting a total of 61 cases. All but one of those schools is in Mississauga, with the lone other location in Caledon.

Brampton’s percentage of schools with active COVID-19 cases exceeds the proportion in its school boards in large.

The rate across Dufferin-Peel Catholic School Board, which includes Mississauga, Caledon, Bolton and Orangeville, is 43 per cent, with a total 65 of its 151 elementary and secondary schools reporting active cases. In Peel’s public board, which serves Brampton, Mississauga and Caledon, the rate is 44 per cent, or 112 of the boards 257 schools.

CityNews has used the latest information posted on all the boards’ own websites to compile this data.

The premier said today that he was not downplaying cases at schools: “numbers don’t lie, they are out there.”

Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health has said several times it is important to keep schools open for children’s mental health, and while students and staff are bringing COVID-19 into schools, it’s not being spread inside them. Provincial Minister of Health Christine Elliott echoed that today, adding she would re-evaluate the situation if needed.

“If the circumstances change and there’s a huge increase in the number of cases in schools, we might have to take another look at it,” Elliott said.

Ontario has started deploying rapid testing in long-term care homes and rural communities. Ford called it a game-changer and suggested if schools needed testing, it could happen. University of Toronto epidemiologist Colin Furness says he doesn’t believe schools need to close, but he says those inside should be tested regularly.

“We should be doing surveillance testing broadly in the province, we should have been doing that since April. By surveillance testing, I mean you don’t test people who show up at hospital looking sick, that’s diagnostic testing. Surveillance testing means you go and test people at risk,” he explained.

“We should be testing teachers because they are also in high-risk positions, and if want to know what’s going on with COVID in schools, test teachers,” he added, “But Ontario has been very resolutely committed to not doing surveillance testing. We are not trying to control transmission with testing, we are controlling with lockdowns. I think that’s unfortunate.”

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