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Search Engines and the Right to Be Forgotten: Squaring the Remedy with Canadian Values on Personal Information Flow

47 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2017  

Andrea Slane

University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), Legal Studies

Date Written: January 28, 2017

Abstract

In Canada, the data protection regime governing the private sector has yet to be interpreted to obligate search engines and other information processors that primarily deal in publicly accessible online information to abide by fair information practices. In a recent case, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) endorsed a complainant’s pursuit of a declaratory court order, which would allow the complainant to appeal to Google to honour its voluntary search alteration policies. The European Union, however, requires search engines to honour complainant’s requests directly, because search engines are primarily commercial business ventures that collect, process, and package information, regardless of the public nature of their source. Search engine results are in this sense a product sold by the search engine company – not directly to the user, but rather to advertisers and other data brokers with an interest in search result content and compilation. In light of this view of search engines as data controllers, this article considers what a Canadian right to be forgotten might look like.

Suggested Citation

Slane, Andrea, Search Engines and the Right to Be Forgotten: Squaring the Remedy with Canadian Values on Personal Information Flow (January 28, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3028072

Andrea Slane (Contact Author)

University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), Legal Studies ( email )

2000 Simcoe Street North
Oshawa, Ontario L1H 7K4
Canada
905-721-8668 x2844 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.socialscienceandhumanities.uoit.ca/

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