Canadians should expect to give up personal information on crossing U.S. border

The Canadian Politician – Canadians travelling to the United States can now expect to give up some of their personal information in a coordinated effort between the two countries to track visitors and determine overstays. This is part of a border agreement that has been implemented. The program which started as a pilot in 2012 at four border crossings targeting third country national and permanent residents, has now been extended to include Canadians and Americans traveling between the two countries. The program includes the exchange of biographic data such as names, gender and date of birth. The collection of the biographic data has raised privacy concerns in Canada with the privacy watchdog, Daniel Therrien, saying he is concerned with the retention period and the possibility of secondary use. He stated, “…we still have concerns over issues such as retention periods applicable to data collected from travelers and the risk that data collected for border purposes is then used for secondary purposes.”

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