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for the IAPP Canada Privacy Symposium 2020

Mark your calendar for February 2020 to catch early bird registration and attend the Symposium at the low early bird price. Even better, sign up right now to receive the latest news and alerts so you can find out which hot topics will be addressed by the stellar roster of speakers we are already beginning to assemble.

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The Symposium is Canada’s number-one privacy event, with a full program of speakers, training, networking, and the perennially popular Commissioners’ Game Show. Read last year’s wrap-up to get a sense of the event and check back in February to attend at the early bird price. See you in Toronto!


2019 Symposium focused on
finding certainty in uncertain times

Where do you look for stability in tumultuous times? Counterintuitively, in change, flexibility and adaptability, according to speakers at the IAPP Canada Privacy Symposium 2019.

The range of topics tackled at the Symposium was vast  ̶  technology, legislation, regulation, policy. Yet, a common thread emerged: build privacy management systems to adapt, because things aren’t quieting down in the near future.

Privacy Commissioner of Canada Daniel Therrien advocated for a flexible definition of privacy based on principles that don’t change in the face of technological advancement. His fellow keynote speaker, Health Standards Organization Chief Digital Officer Amy Yee, urged adopting fundamental attitudinal changes. International privacy advocate Max Schrems theorized that litigation will influence the course of GDPR enforcement, all but ensuring non-stop flux.

While not contemplating the big issues in privacy, the Symposium crowd networked at the 5-Minute Mixer and the Privacy Soirée at Steam Whistle Brewing, engaged exhibitors at the Welcome Reception, and saw past and present privacy commissioners match wits in the Commissioners’ Game Show. Scroll down to see the highlights.

Access the 2019 Presentations
To access a presentation, select the session title to expand the session description. A link to the presentation should be located at the end of the description. Please note that if a presentation is missing, we didn’t receive it or don’t have speaker approval to post it.

Where Did All the Handouts Go?
All literature and handouts will now be provided in digital form instead of paper. You can access them conveniently before, during or after the conference, at

2019 Keynote Speakers

Lisa Austin

Professor, Chair in Law and Technology, University of Toronto

Data’s crucial role in economic development makes a shift away from individual control to “meaningful choice” to preserve privacy, Austin said during her speech.

Max Schrems

Honorary Director, Chairman, Data Protection Lawyer,

Schrems, who successfully challenged Safe Harbor’s legality in court, spoke on litigation’s role in GDPR enforcement.

Daniel Therrien

Privacy Commissioner of Canada

Therrien’s address included a call for a “rights-based” privacy law and amendments based on technological neutrality.

Amy Yee

Chief Digital Officer, Health Standards Organization

Mindset changes can yield transformative solutions, Yee told the general session audience.

Commissioners’ Game Show

This annual favourite took a new twist in 2019 when present and former privacy commissioners teamed up in “Newlywed Game” pairs. They fielded questions about privacy law from IAPP Managing Director Kris Klein. The Symposium crowd appreciated seeing the commissioners past and present as real people tackling real issues.


Moderator: Kris Klein, CIPP/C, CIPM, FIP

Managing Director, Canada, IAPP; Partner, nNovation


Team Commissioners:
Jill Clayton, Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta, Canada
Brent Homan, Deputy Commissioner, Compliance, Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada
Michael McEvoy, Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia, Canada
Catherine Tully, Information and Privacy Commissioner of Nova Scotia, Canada

Team Past Commissioners:
Chantal Bernier, National Practice Leader, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Dentons
David Loukidelis, Former Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia; President, David Loukidelis QC Law Corporation
Jennifer Stoddart, Former Privacy Commissioner of Canada; Attorney, Fasken
Frank Work, Former Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta, Canada

2019 Sessions That Appealed to Every Interest

Breakout sessions covered the full range of privacy management topics. Speakers addressed specific operational issues, technology’s influence on privacy, legislative and regulatory updates and international developments. See the presentations page for the full program.


Implementing AI to Support the Business, Responsibly

Training machines to learn doesn’t have to conflict with ethical treatment of personal data. The speakers described how one organization wove privacy considerations into its AI program, from concept to execution.


Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada’s Annual Sneak Peek

Commissioner Daniel Therrien said the question of whether privacy law needs to be amended is settled. The new question is the best way to do that, especially in light of the Digital Charter released by the Innovation Ministry on the eve of the Symposium.


The Last Jedi: Why the Future of Privacy Belongs to Canada

An overflow crowd heard the speakers’ reasons for characterizing Canada as the world’s privacy Yoda and the rest of the world as Luke Skywalker. Experts explained why Canada’s privacy protection model, balancing regulation and market forces, is The Force, and why the rest of the world should let it flow around and through them. Enlightened was the crowd.

Symposium 2019 Images

Symposium on Twitter

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Other Conferences

Conference 12-13 February

Paris to host IAPP multi-language conference.

Join data protection professionals from across Europe for two days of concentrated learning, sharing, and networking in both English and French at the IAPP Data Protection Intensive: France.

Training 9-10 March
Workshops 10 March
Conference 11-12 March


Famous for focusing on practical responses to operational challenges, the Intensive provides knowledge, tactics and methods you can put to work straight away. Programming combines a UK perspective with a global outlook for a comprehensive view of privacy and data protection issues.

Training April 5-6
Active Learning April 6
Conference April 7-8
Washington, DC

The world’s premier privacy and data protection conference focuses on international topics, policy and strategy. Recognized as a leading forum for discussion, the Summit features expert speakers and top regulators, and delivers unmatched education and networking opportunities.