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Canadian Supreme Court rules internet anonymity is key to privacy

Jun 14 2014, 2:01pm CDT | by , in News | Other Stuff

Canadian Supreme Court rules internet anonymity is key to privacy
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Internet users' information requests will now have to go through courts for a warrant in Canada

We are not sure if this is going to be taken as good news by the Canadian citizens or not but the verdict has it that it's your God-given right to travail the internet as UrTheWurst420 hurling sexually graphic insults at children singing pop songs on YouTube. Your actual identity will not be linked to your account and wont be figured out unless the police manage to get a warrant for that. Thanks to a landmark ruling, the Supreme Court of Canada has established the fact that that online anonymity is a vital component of personal privacy.

This ruling had initially come down after the case of Matthew Spencer, who was tried and convicted for possessing child pornography in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The Shaw Communications was asked for some information on one of their users. The law enforcers wanted to get the name and address of that particular user and now this is something that would require a proper warrant by the police. In this particular case, the court held that the police did a responsible task but in the future such tasks will have to get permission from the courts.

The decision written by Justice Thomas Cromwell "falls short of recognizing any 'right' to anonymity," but recognizes the clear "privacy interest in anonymity depending on the circumstances." And the entire crux of the situation lies in this particular ruling. While it is reasonable for any user to expect that his/her identity will remain a secret, it should be kept in mind that your anonymity in many cases is central to that perceived privacy and only with probable cause should that veil of privacy be lifted according to the court.

 

source: theglobeandmail

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