Metrolinx saw a 47 percent increase in requests from law enforcement agencies for personal information stored on Presto fare cards in 2018, the Toronto Star reports. The majority of the requests were not fulfilled; however, there were 22 instances when Metrolinx turned over rider data without asking for a warrant. “Broadly, the concern is that it’s very important that a mass transit system, a public transit system, doesn’t become a system of mass surveillance,” Canadian Civil Liberties Association’s Privacy, Technology and Surveillance Project Director Brenda McPhail said. Metrolinx Spokesperson Anne Marie Aikins said in a statement the agency “appropriately balances the commitment to protecting the privacy of Presto card users and maintaining the safety and security of the transit system and its passengers.”
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