Canada has just begun this process, with Treasury Board Secretariat guidelines issued in 2005.
The sets out fundamental rights of Canadians in their interaction with the federal state.
The reporting requirements imposed on government institutions should be strengthened in the interests of transparency.
Parliamentary committees should have the appropriate support to review the personal information practices of the federal government.
New technological initiatives such as government on-line implicate privacy, as the walls that are inherently part of the data structure fade away.
If we are to create overarching databases or merge existing databases of personal information, privacy must be built into the design stages of the new technology and systems, as must security.
The framework that should apply under the in granting an individual the right of access to his or her own information should be based on maximizing the transparency of government (consistent with legitimate national security needs for secrecy) and ensuring a maximum amount of accountability of government to Parliament and Canadians.
Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada 112 Kent Street Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1H3 Tel.
The standard for disclosure set by the is very low.
Most data protection statutes prohibit the disclosure of government-held information to a foreign state, except in very specific circumstances.
Many countries experience a disconnect between their legislative apparatus and the contemporary challenges posed by privacy management by both private and public organizations.
Past a certain point, however, lags will impede on good governance and create significant risks for the state, civil society and the economy.