Canada's warrantless surveillance bill is back, and bigger than ever, with surveillance powers for US gov't, too

Bill C30, the sweeping Canadian warrantless Internet surveillance bill, is back from the dead. Public Safety Minister Vic Toews (who declared that opposition to his bill was tantamount to support for pedophiles) has been working behind the scenes to resurrect his legislation, joining forces with the US government in the name of "perimeter security." This proposed deal would expand the warrantless surveillance to US authorities, who could also access Canadians' private information. has been rounding up the names of Canadian MPs who oppose C-30, compiling a master list of the politicians who'll stand with Canadians against this kind of wholesale, international surveillance of their data. They want Canadians to pressure their MPs into taking the pledge.

Vic Toews, far from backing down, is pushing for a renewed multi-faceted scheme to erode Canadians’ online privacy rights: Toews has been working on a deal with the U.S. known as “Perimeter Security”, which could lead to the U.S. government having access to your private data.2 Additionally, the Federal Budget for this year includes a plan to cut funding to the watchdog responsible for overseeing Canada's spy agency, CSIS.3

All in all, Toews’ actions could lead Canada to become a large, recklessly-governed surveillance society.

But we have momentum now, with nearly two-thirds of opposition MPs on our side. You got us this far, now take a moment to get your friends, family, co-workers—everyone you know—to speak out about the costly scheme to collect your private online information at any time, without a warrant.

Letter to Supporters: Who's on your side?


  1. One wonders how the idea of letting the US get their hands into the mix was ever considered a good idea.

    1. The question becomes “Who are they trying to please?”

      I would think their ultra-conservative base would be against sharing our data with any outside country, but we’re in strange times.

      Perhaps they’re trying to show our southern neighbour how cooperative they can be, hoping for some tit-for-tat on pipelines and such.

      Or they could just be batshit insane.

      1. Or they could be seeing the whole north as a single big “america”.

        Combine Canada and USA into a single nation, and the only border that is a issue is the Mexican one. The rest can be covered by submarines and carrier groups.

        Fortress Americana…

        1. Any Americans that think they can just come into Canada and take over, are in for one hell of a surprise. Canada beat back American expansion once and we can do it again. You Americans in this country better watch out. Our governments are working very hard to drive a wedge between us. I suggest getting out of our country and staying out.

          1. On the other hand, Canada does have a history of playing the subordinate colony to a more powerful nation.

          2. BingKabar, exactly what part of reality am I blocking out? The part in the history books that has Canada kicking American ass back down south, or Bill C-30 and Bill C-38 with proves that Harper is selling us out to the Americans?

            Or are you just another ConBot sent to make the rest of the Cons look like a bunch of horses asses?

    2. The worst part is that ANY of these proposed solutions are so easily defeated it’s not even funny. Using a VPN, or free software such as Tor, or even using HTTPS on a website… or even parking outside a McDonald’s and using its free WiFi… would completely protect a “criminal” from any snooping. This bill would catch nobody but the incredibly stupid.Obviously, someone who wrote that bill would know about this, since these techniques aren’t exactly IT rocket science. So given that it won’t “prevent crime” or “help national security”, you’re left wondering what that bill was REALLY designed for.

  2. Gotta review the list of Conservative MPs that eventually spoke out near the end of the first C-30 debacle, expressing distrust and dissatisfaction with the original, see if their concerns -esp. based on constituents concerns- have been addressed, ignored or deepened. 

    This will take a large public outcry and demanding some Conservative MPs stand for their constituents since Toews/Harper/Clement/Nicholson refused to learn the firs time.

    1. The long form census was too intrusive because it asked how many bathrooms were in your home. Unless your toilet’s got an IP address, this is totally different, obviously.

      1. They won’t need the Long Form after C-30.

        Edited to add:
        You should listen to the opinions of someone who’s very likely read the whole bill — Ann Cavoukian, Ontario’s Privacy Commissioner:

      2. Are you saying your toilet is more of a private matter than me doing banking online, or having a private conversation with friends or family? If you live in a building that had all the proper permits for the construction, chances are it’s public record as to what is in your house, including toilets.

    2. The census was too intrusive in that you could go to jail for not filling it out… So it forced people to do something.  This doesn’t force them to do anything, they can just sit back and enjoy the safety of the panopticon.

      Make people do stuff = intrusive.
      Let other country watch all your traffic = just fine.

    3. Don’t forget the Long Gun Registry — also scrapped by the Conservatives for being too intrusive.

      1.  Keep in mind that the Long Gun registry did nothing but create a million dollar expense on our tax dollars, and that it accomplished nothing but make people wade through hours of paperwork.

        Did not improve any security for anyone, long guns are hardly ever the problem (ie, your .44 rifle) compared to something like a handgun or a sawed off shotgun. Just sayin.

        1. The various Canadian police forces said otherwise and that it was helpful to them. The Long Gun registry was accessed a thousands of times a day by police and they said it was always helpful when they were going into a house to know if there were weapons on the premises. Most often in cases where the police were there to investigate domestic violence report.

          Also some argued that it was helpful for dealing with stolen weapons.

  3. I just sent an email message to my MP, Dominic Leblanc, asking him to add his name to the list.

  4. Uh, you could have all the opposition MP’s lined up and it wouldn’t matter.  The Conservatives have a majority.  We need to start hammering the party in power (especially those like me in a Conservative riding).

  5. Harper and his Cons are traitors, selling us out to foreign interests. They should be rounded up and locked away as the criminal organization they are. All these investigations, court cases and committees are stalling for time. By the time anything is actually done, Canada will no longer belong to us, but countries like the US and China!

  6. Vic Toews, far from backing down, is pushing for a renewed multi-faceted scheme to erode Canadians’ online privacy rights: Toews has been working on a deal with the U.S. known as “Perimeter Security”, which could lead to the U.S. government having access to your private data.

    There are some parts of “perimeter security” I’m okay with. NORAD, for example, seems to have worked well for our mutual defense for many decades.

    But I don’t hear about how the personal lives of Americans are going to be made available to the Canadian government. There’s nothing mutual about this. This is a sell-out of the highest order, giving special interests everything they ever wanted in exchange for the riches they’ll expect in return. This is nothing but bald-faced corruption.

  7. And this is how they keep coming back for more and more, until a law is passed that says what they want to encroach is explicitly off-limits.

  8. If we’re going to sell out our nationality to the highest bidder let’s accept an offer from a country with a better credit rating than the US

  9. I’ve said it several times here on BoingBoing and I’ll say it again,
    Every time their putrid legislative bills fail, they ram them back into congress/parliament in a matter of weeks, only nastier, more draconian.

    Maybe I’ve only become aware of this in the last couple of years and it’s always been this way, maybe this is a new trend of outraged corporate sense of entitlement, ex-congressmen/lobbyists on speed dial, I dunno.

  10. If you are contacting a supporter of Bill C-30 (be it Vic Peeping Tom, your local MP, a different MP, or whoever), ask them why they have such a problem with Articles 1, 2, and 8 of Part 1 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Namely (pardon the long quote):

    PART I

    Whereas Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of law:

    Guarantee of Rights and Freedoms

    Rights and freedoms in Canada

    1. The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guarantees the rights and freedoms set out in it subject only to such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.

    Fundamental freedoms

    2. Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms:

    (a) freedom of conscience and religion;

    (b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication;

    (c) freedom of peaceful assembly; and

    (d) freedom of association.

    Legal Rights

    Search or seizure

    8. Everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure.

    I submit that Bill C-30 goes far beyond the placing of reasonable limits on the rights and freedoms granted in articles 2 and 8 in a just and democratic society. The Charter guarantees us freedom of communication media, and the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure. The Internet and everything that runs on top of it is a communication medium. I submit that the ability to gather subscriber data without due process (a warrant) on no reason whatsoever to suspect that the subscriber in question is engaging in any sort of improper or illegal activity, as this can open the way to a very broad net of information, is an unreasonable search.

    I submit that the Honorable Vic Towes is attempting to subvert the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and is attempting to expose this data to foreign governments (the USA). Kneecapping the CSIS watchdog is just open contempt at Canadians demanding Vic stop with the insanity.

  11. Democracy is dead.  Long live King Stephen.  I don’t know why anyone is worried about this.  The party in power is Canada’s natural governing party…and of course they would never do anything to worry us.  I say we leave them in power for a while and start a pool to predict how long before:
    1) they can detain anyone they want for any reason and too bad if they do.
    2) Canada’s water supply becomes USA’s water supply.
    3) Canada’s oil becomes american oil.
    4) Canada’s sovereignty in the north becomes america’s responsibility.
    5) Our environment starts to look like a sewer underneath NYC.
    6)  The maple leaf on our military’s uniforms starts to morph into stars and stripes. 
    7) Health care becomes “pay as you go”.

    On a positive note, our taxes will go down…

    1. I’d actually like to live in a Canada that doesn’t consider any of those appropriate milestones to make bets on.

      1. Well, that goes without saying…my sense of despair tells me that this is the direction the country is heading in…and for sure King Stephen has friends who will “profit” by it all. I am cynical enough to think that when the next federal election comes around, the King will get “re-anointed”…and we’ll be a few steps closer to the grim reality I outlined. Really, all he needs to do is start back with the attack ads…people are easily fooled. You tell them something often enough, it becomes “the truth”… Subject: [boingboing] Re: Canada’s warrantless surveillance bill is back, and bigger than ever, with surveillance powers for US gov’t, too

  12. Violates Canadian Privacy rights, surrenders Canadian sovereignty rights

    How the fucking hell are the conservatives still in power!?!?!?

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