Big Brother, Coming to a Network Near You

The Canadian government is pushing ahead with on-line spying laws that will give police the power to demand information from Internet service providers without a warrant.

Public Safety Minister Vic Toews says it’s just like the information listed in the phone book. That might be true if the phone book also listed all the calls you make and receive. With IP and MAC address information from ISP’s all of your internet activity can be traced.

The government of course says they’re going after child-pornographers and the like. Who would be against that?

But is the threat to Canadian’s privacy too great? Suppose you were a volunteer for some grass-roots political party. And suppose there were people in the governing party who were not entirely ethical. Might people in government know people in policing who might be willing to put the request to your ISP and pass the info to their friends in government?

Could that happen in Canada? If these laws pass, what would prevent it?

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