#CyberFLASH: Goodale to launch C-51 consultations on Thursday

ralph-goodalejpg-jpg-size-custom-crop-1086x784Opponents of the Harper government’s controversial national security legislation, C-51, will have the chance to officially voice their concerns to government starting Thursday, when Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale kicks off another round of consultations focused on Canada’s national security.

Goodale will make the announcement flanked by Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould in Edmonton Thursday afternoon and it will make up the second part of a two-pronged review of Canada’s national security, the first of which launched last month with a focus on cyber security.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to fix “problematic elements” of C-51 during the 2015 election campaign, pledging to “guarantee that all Canadian Security Intelligence Service warrants respect the Charter of Rights and Freedoms; establish an all-party national security oversight committee; ensure that Canadians are not limited from lawful protests and advocacy; require that government review all appeals by Canadians on the no-fly list; narrow overly broad definitions, such as defining “terrorist propaganda” more clearly; limit Communications Security Establishment’s powers by requiring a warrant to engage in the surveillance of Canadians; require a statutory review of the full Anti-Terrorism Act after three years; and prioritize community outreach and counter-radicalization, by creating the Office of the Community Outreach and Counter-radicalization Coordinator.”

Several of those items are already ticked off or soon to be: the government announced its plan for a committee tasked with reviewing national security activities in June and has begun the process of launching an office to help individuals whose names match those of people flagged on the no-fly list.

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#CyberFLASH: National security review tries to tackle needs of law enforcement in digital world

160815_iy0oi_rci-cell-phone_sn635OTTAWA— The Liberal government is taking another crack at making it easier for police and spies to gain “lawful access” to telecom companies’ customers’ subscriber information, online activities, telephone conversations, and encrypted communications.

It comes deep into a sweeping discussion paper on how Canada should overhaul its national security laws.

The so-called “green paper,” released Thursday by Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, paints a picture of police and national security agencies stymied by technological advancements that terror suspects turn to their advantage, a Supreme Court of Canada decision that requires time-consuming unwieldy warrants for basic Internet subscriber information, and the failure of legislation to keep up with the bad guys.

The Liberal government is broaching the hot button topic more than four years after the Conservatives triggered an uproar when a senior cabinet minister — Vic Toews — accused opponents of siding with child pornographers if they didn’t support a bill to update state powers of electronic surveillance. Amid a storm of criticism and a backlash from privacy advocates, that bill was withdrawn.

This time, however, the Liberal government is making a detailed legal argument in favour of updating its powers in public and inviting Canadians to weigh in.

Goodale did not refer to the lawful access proposals in a news conference in Edmonton meant to highlight that the Liberals are keeping a promise to consult Canadians on changes to the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2015, also known as Bill C-51.

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