Canada: Office of Privacy Commissioner Releases New Guidance to Help Address Consent Challenges in the Digital Age

From the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada:

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada has published two important new guidance documents – on obtaining meaningful consent and on inappropriate data practices – to help organizations ensure they comply with their privacy obligations in the digital age.


The consent guidance sets out practical and actionable advice for organizations to ensure they obtain meaningful consent in the online environment,” says Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien, who launched the guidance today at a conference of the International Association of Privacy Professionals in Toronto. “Our goal here is also to help empower Canadians.”

The guidance on “no-go zones”, meanwhile, suggests to companies which practices are inappropriate and informs individuals of what organizations are generally prohibited from doing, even with consent.


Organizations should educate themselves on the obligations set out in this new guidance and take steps to comply with the requirements. The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada will begin applying the inappropriate data practices guidance July 1, 2018 and the consent guidance starting Jan. 1, 2019.

The consultation on the issue of consent was launched in mid-2016 with the goal of identifying improvements to the existing model and to bring clearer definition to the roles and responsibilities of the various players who could implement them.

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Guidance Documents