Who knew that Big Brother was from Canada?
The screeching sound of privacy brakes can be heard north of the border as plans to use high-tech microphones to record conversations have been put on hold. Earlier this week Canadian borders were all set to go ahead with this controversial new eavesdropping plan, but officials in Ottowa have decided to reassess the program. CTV reports: “The audio surveillance program has been suspended until a Privacy Impact Assessment can be conducted and the government can review recommendations from the Privacy Commissioner” Backtracking comes after a surge of complaints came in over privacy concerns.
It’s one thing to use cameras to track people – I think we’re all pretty used to that by now, but the idea that the Canadian government had the means to record conversations proved to be too much, for now. Officials haven’t totally scrapped the idea. In fact, the microphones are already set up. Someone just needs to hit the record button. That won’t happen until the program goes through an official Privacy Impact Assessment, which will need to show “empirical evidence that there is a need to collect audio and video recordings of travellers, as well as show that the information collected will be handled properly.”
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