On The Wire

Protecting Journalists and Their Sources

On September 27, 2019, the Supreme Court of Canada released the 8-1 ruling in Denis v Cote, 2019 SCC 44 examining the trust relationship between journalists and their confidential sources. If it is a victory for freedom of the press, it is not the one many had hoped for. Here's ...
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Deepfakes

Deepfake is a technique for the synthesis of a human image based on artificial intelligence. It is used to combine an image onto a source image by a technique called generative adversarial network. Generative algorithms are getting so good that synthesized media will soon become indistinguishable from reality. In an ...
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Heather Ferg Joins ‘On The Wire’

On January 2, 2014, the inaugural post titled Welcome To: On The Wire described the blog as a forum for opinion about the Charter of Rights and the criminal law with an emphasis on privacy issues. As we approach the end of six years online I am pleased to announce ...
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Cell Phone Border Searches Limited to Contraband

On July 25, 2016, Miguel Cano arrived at the San Ysidro port of entry to the United States from Tijuana, Mexico. He was sent to secondary inspection by officials of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency (CBP) because of a random computer referral. A narcotic-detecting dog indicated his vehicle's ...
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Facebook Listened to Messenger Conversations

Google. Apple. Microsoft. Amazon. And now, Facebook is the latest tech giant to confirm using outside contractors to transcribe clips of audio from users of its services. Here's the story. On August 13, 2019, in the lead article carried by Bloomberg News titled Facebook Paid Contractors to Transcribe Users' Audio ...
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A Hot Target Vehicle

On January 16, 2018, the police were on proactive patrol in an area of Edmonton, Alberta, riddled with property crime. They were on the lookout for stolen vehicles. Ford trucks were on the priority list. Then, along came Illay Mohamed in an F-150 registered to a woman. Here's the story ...
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Privacy and Policing

An online sting operation, the entry of private property and a midnight pedestrian stop produced three recent rulings from the Supreme Court of Canada that considered the parameters of police powers under the Charter of Rights. All three cases raised questions of privacy rights. 1. The Online Sting Cst Greg ...
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Regulating Ethical Artificial Intelligence

In June 2018 the European Commission set up the High Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence (HLEG AI) consisting of fifty-two representatives from academia, civil society and industry. The HLEG AI was charged with the general objective of supporting the implementation of the European strategy on artificial intelligence. It has ...
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The Ghost Key Proposal

The proposal by Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), Britain's spy agency responsible for signals intelligence (SIGINT), that would silently add a law enforcement participant to digital group chats or calls, has been condemned as posing serious threats to cybersecurity and fundamental human rights. 1. The Proposal The proposal was first suggested ...
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The Internet of Bodies

The Internet. Then, the Internet of Things (IoT) with interconnected devices like thermostats, refrigerators and motor vehicles. Now, the human body is a technology platform. What, then, is the Internet of Bodies (IoB)? And what privacy and security implications does it pose as it blurs the line between human and ...
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