Internet users’ privacy upheld by Canada’s top court

Internet service providers can’t give customer names, addresses and phone numbers to police without a search warrant, Canada’s top court has ruled in a unanimous decision released this morning.The decision upholds Canadians’ right to privacy and anonymity in their online activities. It also means parts of the cyberbullying and digital privacy bills that are currently before the House of Commons may be unconstitutional. Friday’s decision concerned the case of Matthew David Spencer, of Saskatchewan, who was charged in 2007 and convicted of possession of child pornography after a police officer saw illegal files being downloaded to his IP address — a series of numbers representing the internet identity of a device such as a computer.

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