Google’s New Privacy Policy Scrutinized

Google Inc. implemented a controversial new privacy policy that took effect on March 1st, and is aimed at streamlining its data collection processes. Google insists it had users in mind when it consolidated the privacy policies for most of its more than 70 products.

The main concern being raised by most critics, including the Federal Privacy Commissioner, is how Google will now start saving user information collected from all its services in one place. For example, users who log into several different services – such as Google.ca, Gmail and YouTube – will have data about all their searches and clicks stored together.

New Privacy Tools for Young Internet Users Released by the Federal Privacy Commissioner

The Privacy Commissioner of Canada, Jennifer Stoddart, has released a series of new practical tools to help teachers and parents communicate with young people about the privacy risks associated with online activities and help them better protect their information online.

The tools include a video, tip sheet or parents and a youth presentation package – they can be found at http://www.youthprivacy.ca/en/index.html.

Guidelines for Social Media Background Checks

With social media becoming widely accessible, employers have taken this as an opportunity to gain background information on potential employees and volunteers.

With easy access to information the risk of violating privacy laws has become heightened. In response to growing privacy concerns and inquires, Alberta’s Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner (OIPC) has released Guidelines for Social Media Background Checks.

Federal Privacy Commissioner’s New Behavioural Advertising Guidelines

Online tracking of internet users for marketing purposes has become commonplace in the advertising world. These practices have recently been called into question by Canada’s privacy watchdog.

On December 6, 2011 the Canada’s Privacy Commissioner released new Guidelines for online behavioural advertising. This form of advertising involves gathers information from internet users over time by tracking their online activities, in order to deliver advertising directed at the users’ interests. Behavioural advertisers often build detailed personal profiles of users in order to assign them to various interest categories.