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Canada Dashboard Digest | Notes from the IAPP Canada Managing Director, April 9, 2021 Related reading: Notes from the IAPP Canada Managing Director, April 2, 2021




For anyone who thought privacy might take a back seat during the pandemic, I don't think that's what any of us in the industry are experiencing. It's actually quite the opposite.

With virtually everything being online these days and more options than ever, the organizations that are showing they care about privacy are rising to the top, building trust — and keeping privacy pros busy!

The day-to-day privacy work continues. New privacy hurdles are being overcome by those who had to quickly move things online, and privacy issues are a necessary component throughout the government's pandemic response.

I have to say that the privacy-friendly online options are quite a relief these days. Everyone in Ontario, where we live, is in full lockdown. This week, our household experienced firsthand the COVID Alert app's effectiveness when one of the kids, despite so many precautions, contracted the virus — it's a bit nerve-wracking, and we are heavily quarantined right now. I think there's still a misconception out there that the government is using the app to spy on citizens, and it feels like there's some unevenness in its use, so I'd encourage them to keep demystifying and nudging people to use it. I'm glad it worked for us.

While we're still in the thick of things and must continue to exercise caution, it is great to finally see (albeit far too slowly) vaccines rolling out in Canada. I don't imagine things will ever go completely back to normal, but it will be so great to start having in-person meetings, networking opportunities and conferences again. Not that I mind delivering privacy classes via Zoom, but nothing replaces the in-person experience.

What will it be like when we can travel again? It will be interesting to see developments on the idea of vaccination passports and certification to enter events, cross borders and more. One can imagine the freedoms a thing like this could offer (sign me up!), along with myriad risks if it's not done right. The Globe and Mail wrote about the issue this week, and Maclean's ran something a couple of weeks ago suggesting Canada look at what Estonia is doing. That being said, I have seen very little concrete information coming out of the government on this issue. I sure hope they are turning their minds to this new privacy challenge. Do you think there should be a vaccination passport? As privacy pros, how should it be handled? Would you get one? Drop me a line, and let me know your thoughts!


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