Canadian Association of Police Chiefs calls on government to approve U.S.-style internet surveillance

By End the Lie

(Image source: iPolitics.ca)

For those who think that certain countries are somehow immune to the sweeping cancer that is the total erosion of privacy and our most essential rights, that myth should be at least partially swept away by the fact that the Canadian Association of Police Chiefs is calling on the government there to pass a controversial internet surveillance bill.

Indeed, this trend very well could go global with the United Nations calling for worldwide internet surveillance and data retention laws, thus going far beyond the current system in place in the United States.

Unsurprisingly, the push is being carried out under the guise of fighting crime, evidenced by the arguments the president of the Canadian Association of Police Chiefs and Vancouver Police Chief Jim Chu.

Chu says that if the bill, known as Bill C-30, fails to be passed, “officers investigating criminal activity on cellphones and the internet will still have to get a warrant every time they want to intercept communications by cybercriminals,” according to the CBC.

“Law enforcement continues to be handcuffed by legislation introduced in 1975, the days of the rotary telephone,” said Chu.

This argument is almost identical to that used across the United States. The typical claim is that warrants take too long to obtain and that law enforcement is held back by the Constitution.

Bill C-30 dates back to last winter when it was introduced by Vic Toews, the Canadian public safety minister. As the CBC rightly points out, Bill C-30 immediately was questioned by groups concerned with the disturbing powers it would give the Canadian government “to track the ordinary activities of citizens online without judicial oversight.”

If anyone wants to know how well such a strategy works, just take a look at the United States. While it is regularly claimed that such legislation in no way infringes on our rights or that we should be content with giving up said rights in the name of safety, such assertions are clearly without merit.

Unsurprisingly, Chu claims it is not actually about spying but about getting information from telecommunications companies in a timely manner.

“If we don’t take a strong stance on this issue Canadians won’t appreciate the limitations that constrain law enforcement in the cyberworld,” claimed Chu, according to the CBC.

If Bill C-30 passes, providers of internet and cellphone services will be forced to release the name, address, phone number, email and IP information of targeted individuals to police whenever requested.

While this might seem fine in principle to some, the problem is that there is no oversight whatsoever. Allowing this type of legislation to pass just opens the door to more freedom-crushing bills in the future.

“Like the chief said, I can tell you right now there are gangsters out there communicating about killing someone and we can’t intercept that,” said Vancouver deputy police chief Warren Lemcke.

Lemcke’s argument has become quite stale at this point as it is the same faulty line of reasoning used by supporters of internet surveillance in the United States and now the UN as well.

“Section 34 of the bill essentially would give any government appointed agents, who may or may not be a police or intelligence officer, the right to access and copy any information and documentation collected by internet providers and telecommunications companies, without the need for a warrant, judicial oversight or even a criminal investigation,” according to the CBC.

Keep in mind, the CBC is hardly an organization that would bend the facts in an attempt to shut down such legislation. After all, they are the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the government-owned national public broadcaster of Canada equivalent to the BBC in the United Kingdom.

To make Bill C-30 even more disturbing, it would also require telecommunications companies to install surveillance hardware and software which allows the government to gather and monitor both phone and internet communications.

Even Chu seems to be concerned with Section 34 of Bill C-30.

“While the CACP endorses Bill C-30, we would like to make it clear there is one part of the bill that has posed concerns to some and we share that concern,” said Chu.

“It is easy to understand why some might conclude from that wording that inspectors would have unfettered access to Canadians’ personal records when doing these inspections,” Chu continued. “While we realize that’s not the intention of this section, this must be clarified.”

For those who see those statements as somehow vindicating, I highly suggest you take a look at similar claims made in other nations like the United States.

Unfortunately such calls for “clarification” are hardly ever actually carried out. A phenomenal example would be the U.S. National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012 and specifically the indefinite detention provisions which were shot down by a federal judge only to be reinstated almost immediately by a judge appointed by Obama.

Why would anyone think that Canada would somehow be immune to this vicious assault on our most essential liberties?

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3 Responses to Canadian Association of Police Chiefs calls on government to approve U.S.-style internet surveillance

  1. End time servant October 28, 2012 at 4:47 PM

    Daily your site and many others tell constantly of horrible new laws horrible new ideas beyond are wildest mind more terrible then any made up horror film but it is reality it is here and no matter who sits in some chair pretending to be a leader of a country especially the USA it does not matter this is going to get ugly more and more and we are goi g to feel and see a whole lot of Terrible things happen to us and why no god anymore only evil round the clock

    Reply
  2. Pingback: Canadian Association of Police Chiefs Calls on Government to Approve U.S.-Style Internet Surveillance

  3. Rwolf November 17, 2012 at 7:34 PM

    U.S. Expanding Cross-border Police Integration With Canada & Asset Forfeiture Sharing

    Concurrent with Obama’s proposed law legalizing and expanding cross-border police integration in North America, Canadians earlier this year discovered introduced (Commons Bill C-30 touted to protect children on the Internet—would also give any Canadian police officer—without a warrant—the power to request Internet service providers turn over customers’ information (see section 17 of C-30); allow Canadian police to seek into Canadians’ private computers. C-30 was strongly opposed by Canadians in April 2012. Canadians further discovered Canada had signed with the United States an array of (Asset Forfeiture Sharing Agreements) for Canada to share Canadian and Americans assets civilly or criminally confiscated using Asset Forfeiture laws that resulted from U.S. and Canada sharing information gleaned from electronic surveillance of Canadian and American Citizens’ communications, e.g., emails, faxes, Internet actively, phone records.

    Compare: The Obama Government wants the power (without a warrant) to introduce as evidence in U.S. Civil; Criminal and Administrative prosecutions any phone call record, email or Internet activity. Police can take out of context any innocent—hastily written email, fax or phone call record to allege a crime or violation was committed to cause a person’s arrest, fines and or civil asset forfeiture of their property. There are more than 350 laws/violations that can subject property to Government forfeiture that require only a civil preponderance of evidence.

    The U.S. “Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act of 2000” (effectively eliminated) the “five year statue of limitations” for Government Civil Asset Forfeiture: the statute now runs five years (from the date) government or a police agency allege they “learned” an asset became subject to forfeiture. It is foreseeable should (no warrant) government electronic surveillance be allowed; police will relentlessly sift through business and Citizens’ (government retained Internet data), emails and phone communications to discover possible criminal or civil violations. History Repeats: A corrupt or despot U.S. Government/Agency can too easily use no-warrant—(seized emails, Internet data and phone call information) to blackmail Americans, corporations and others in the same manner Hitler used his police state no warrant passed laws to extort support for the Nazi fascist government, including getting members of German parliament to pass Hitler’s 1933 Discriminatory Decrees that suspended the Constitutional Freedoms of German Citizens. A Nazi Government threat of Asset Forfeiture of an individual or corporation’s assets was usually sufficient to ensure Nazi support.

    Under U.S. federal civil asset forfeiture laws, a person or business need not be charged with a crime for government to forfeit their property. Most U.S. Citizens, property and business owners that defend their assets against Government Civil Asset Forfeiture claim an “innocent owner defense.” This defense can become a criminal prosecution trap for both guilty and innocent property owners. Any fresh denial of guilt made to government when questioned about committing a crime “even when you did not do the crime” may (involuntarily waive) a defendant’s right to assert in their defense—the “Criminal Statute of Limitations” past for prosecution; any fresh denial of guilt even 30 years after a crime was committed may allow U.S. Government prosecutors to use old and new evidence, including information discovered during Civil Asset Forfeiture Proceedings to launch a criminal prosecution. For that reason: many innocent Americans, property and business owners are reluctant to defend their property and businesses against Government Civil Asset Forfeiture. Annually U.S. Government seizes Billions in assets without filing criminal charges. Increasingly local police are turning their criminal investigations over to Federal Agencies to receive an 80% rebate of forfeited assets. Federal Government is not required to charge anyone with a crime to forfeit property.

    Re: waiving Criminal Statute of Limitations: see USC18, Sec.1001, James Brogan V. United States. N0.96-1579. U.S. See paragraph (6) at:
    http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/96-1579.ZC1.html

    Reply

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