Bill C-30 may give the government new surveillance powers, but it’s shocking what they already know

Originally posted on National Post | News:

After a B.C. lawyer’s dinner companion left the restaurant, police officers came to the table and asked everyone still seated to hand over identification. To clear up any misunderstanding, the lawyer complied.

He was then registered in a government database as having a known association with a gangster. Befuddled, he learned the person he had dined with had said hello to a gang member on the way out, the lawyer’s supporters say.

He is quietly fighting, so far unsuccessfully, to have that designation deleted, concerned that anytime police check he will immediately be flagged as suspicious and dangerous.

Welcome to the age of the data shadow.

A proposed federal law, Bill C-30, tabled this week by Public Safety Minister Vic Toews, requires Internet service providers and cellphone companies to hand over basic customer information to authorities without a warrant.

It is causing a furor.

[np-related]

“Now, every single Canadian citizen…

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