Statistics Canada is under fire for reportedly asking Canadian banks for their customers' most personal financial info without their knowledge or consent. In an exclusive report by Global News, Stats Canada was exposed for trying to obtain Canadians' private financial data, including bank account balances, bill and credit card payments, e-transfers and transaction histories.
Global claims that Stats Canada is hoping to get the banking info of 500,000 Canadians, but the nine banks they've requested information from have yet to fully come on board.
If they do, the data will be selected at random. So, as a Canadian with a bank account, the chances of your financial info being obtained by Stats Canada are one in twenty, according to Global. But, the report also points out that Stats Canada will require a new sample of data every year, which means that millions of randomly selected bank accounts will eventually be kept under their watch.
As the government of Canada's official resource for statistics on our population, Stats Canada claims that the info they obtain will be kept confidential and used for data purposes only.
"We are not keeping Canadians in the dark, we are fully transparent about the data that we collect and how we collect it. And [we] assure Canadians their privacy is being respected,” a director at Stats Canada told Global News.
But, for many Canadians, this statement isn't remotely reassuring. Since Global released the news, social media has flooded with comments from angry and concerned Canadians who feel that their privacy has been violated, regardless of Stats Canada's intentions.
What's more concerning is that even our Prime Minister is defending Stats Canada's decision to go behind Canadians' backs to obtain their most personal banking info. When questioned by the media, Justin Trudeau said little more than “high quality and timely data are critical to ensuring that government programs remain relevant and effective for Canadians."
Source: Global News