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CIPS’ views on Bill C-475 (Proposed changes to PIPEDA)

Charmaine Borg, the New Democratic Party Member of Parliament for the riding of Terrebonne—Blainville in Quebec, recently informed CIPS about the introduction of Bill C-475, and CIPS provided the following response:


Thank you for your email informing CIPS, Canada’s Association for IT Professionals, of your introduction of Bill C-475,  an Act to amend the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (order-making power), to the House of Commons on February 26, 2013.

CIPS is very interested in changes to PIPEDA and any Acts introduced to amend PIPEDA.  The CIPS Code of Ethics requires our members to:

  • protect the public interest
  • understand and comply with any obligations that may be imposed on them under applicable privacy legislation, including The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, and any amendments to or successor legislation;
  • report problems that might result in serious damage to persons, organizations, property or the economy, to the relevant authority.

In formulating a response to your email, we have reviewed PIPEDA: Bill C-12 and Bill C-475.

Bill C-12 seems to have stalled after First Reading (September 29, 2011).

Bill C-475 addresses any incident involving the loss or disclosure of, or unauthorized access to, personal information, where a reasonable person would conclude that there exists a possible risk of harm to an individual as a result of the loss or disclosure or unauthorized access.

CIPS supports breach notification to the Privacy Commissioner and that individuals are alerted when the breach is likely to actually affect them.   We note that Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) (Alberta) has had mandatory breach notification for several years and it works on a similar model to what is proposed(

Further we believe that any organization that holds personal information should be held accountable for the protection of that data so that it does not result in serious damage to persons.



Brenda Byers, I.S.P., ITCP

Chair, CIPS National Board of Directors


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