Accounting for Law

More balanced view of the meaning of privacy

By Mark Hayes

Privacy statutes passed by federal and provincial governments over the past 20 years are notorious for employing vague and general language.

Because they are usually considered at first instance by privacy regulators — whose role as “privacy advocates” is well-known — these laws have tended to be interpreted in a “pro-privacy” manner. However, several recent cases illustrate that courts are now willing to take a more balanced view of the meaning of privacy laws.

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