Privacy commissioner: it should be easier to remove, de-index online information

Privacy commissioner: it should be easier to remove, de-index online information
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OTTAWA — The federal privacy commissioner says Canadians need better tools to protect their online reputation, including the right to ask search engines to de-index or remove inaccurate, incomplete or outdated information.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner says its proposals have some similarities to the Right to Be Forgotten rules in Europe but that existing Canadian law already contains protections for online reputation.

For instance, a federal privacy law covering the private sector currently provides for both de-indexing — which removes links but leaves content on a database — and the removal of content from the internet through source takedown.

The report says Canadians should be permitted to easily delete information they’ve posted about themselves on social media and have the right to challenge information that’s illegal, inaccurate, incomplete or out-of-date.

Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien is also recommending that Parliament undertake a study of the issue, so that elected officials confirm that Canada has the right balance between privacy and freedom of information.

The Canadian Press

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