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David Fraser

David Fraser

Partner

Office
Halifax
Tel: 902.444.8535
Fax: 902.425.6350


Languages
English

Profile

David is well-known as one of Canada’s leading internet, technology and privacy lawyers. He regularly advises a range of clients – from start-ups to Fortune 100 companies – on all aspects of technology and privacy laws.

 

David advises private and public sector clients to implement compliance programs for Canadian privacy legislation, including the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (Canada), the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (Nova Scotia) and the Privacy Act (Canada). He regularly provides opinions on privacy laws for both Canadian and international clients and is a frequently invited speaker on this topic. David also acts for complainants and respondents in matters referred to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner. He is the author of the popular Canadian Privacy Law Blog (blog.privacylawyer.ca) and Canadian Cloud Law Blog (cloudlawyer.ca). David’s Privacy Law Blog was awarded a “Clawbie” in 2013 by the Canadian Law Blog Awards.

 

David is widely recognized as one of Canada’s foremost authorities on privacy law and other legal issues associated with cloud computing. He regularly advises vendors and customers in connection with implementing cloud computing projects, in both the public and private sectors. David is particularly known for his ability to cut through the seemingly intractable issues related to cross-border data flows and law enforcement/national security access to customer data.

 

A significant portion of David’s practice is devoted to working with American and multi-national businesses in addressing Canadian privacy law issues. This often includes contract negotiations, policy reviews, pre-launch product reviews, addressing complaints and advising with respect to data breaches. For example, David regularly advises Google Inc. and has represented the company before the Privacy Commissioner of Canada in connection with a range of matters, including Google’s inadvertent collection of WiFi payload information when driving Street View cars in Canada.

 

In addition, David is the Past President of the Canadian IT Law Association and the former Chair of National Privacy and Access Law Section of the Canadian Bar Association. David was honoured to be included in the inaugural (2006) and each subsequent edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada in the category of Information Technology law. He is listed among the world’s leading lawyers in Internet and eCommerce Law in the International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers. In the spring of 2006, David was a recipient of an Outstanding Young Canadian Award by the Junior Chamber of Commerce International – Halifax Chapter.  In 2009, David was named as one of Canada’s “Top 40 Lawyers Under 40” by Lexpert, and is listed in Lexpert’s guide to leading lawyers in Canada. In 2011, David was named by The Lawyers Weekly as one of Canada’s top 24 legal social media influencers. In 2013, David was among the finalists for Canadian Lawyer magazine’s most influential Canadian lawyers. David is also ranked in The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory.

 

David is often sought out by the media for informed commentary on privacy and technology law issues, including CBC’s The National, CTV National News, CBC Radio, the National Post, Lawyer’s Weekly, Canadian Lawyer and the Halifax Chronicle Herald.

 

David has served on the Research Ethics Board of the Capital District Health Authority. He is currently a member of the Joint Data Access Committee of the IWK Health Centre for Women and Children in Halifax, which reviews applications for research access to personal health information. In 2002, David was invited to be an associate of the Institute of Law and Technology. He is a member of the faculty of Dalhousie Law School, where he teaches Internet and Media Law, Law and Technology, and Law and Policy for Electronic Commerce. He is on the editorial board of the Canadian Journal of Law and Technology and is a regular contributor to the Canadian IT Law Association’s newsletter. Active in the Halifax technology community, David is secretary and director of Digital Nova Scotia (formerly ITANS).

 

Education

  • LL.B., Dalhousie University (1999)
  • M.A., Saint Mary’s University (1996)
  • B.A., (Hons.), University of British Columbia (1993)

Canada Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL)

 To follow is a sample of our work relating to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL):   Advising US-based international, online membership-only retailer on compliance with Canada Anti-Spam legislation (CASL) Advising US-based international communications corporation on compliance with Canada Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) Advising US-based international online advertising and marketing agent on compliance with Canada Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL)

McInnes Cooper’s David Fraser in Canadian Privacy Law Review: Ontario Court Awards $10K for Legal Aid File Peeking in McIntosh v. Legal Aid Ontario
December 18, 2014

Breach of privacy and the civil wrong of “invasion of privacy” or “intrusion upon seclusion” and the compensation for it is an evolving area of law in Canada.  Read McInnes Cooper lawyer David Fraser’s article,  Ontario Court Awards $10K for Legal Aid File Peeking, about the Ontario Superior Court’s decision on a civil claim for breach of

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Legal Alert: Privacy in Basic Cell Phones – SCC Continues Trend of Privacy Protection in R.v. Fearon
December 11, 2014

On December 11, 2014 the Supreme Court of Canada continued its trend to recognize privacy rights – and develop the law to protect them – this time in basic cell phone contents. The SCC decided it must modify the police power to conduct prompt cell phone searches incident to arrest because of its increased potential to

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Legal Update: Complying with Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) – A blueprint for the construction industry
December  1, 2014

The construction industry – project owners, contractors, subcontractors and trades – might be relaxing, ignoring the hype around Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), and thinking it’s targeted at “spammers”.   But don’t get too comfortable; here’s how CASL applies to you, why you should care – and the top 5 “Dos and Don’ts” if you didn’t

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McInnes Cooper’s David Fraser and Trent Skanes in the Newfoundland & Labrador Construction Association’s 2015 NLCA Construction Journal: Complying With Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) – A blue print for the construction industry
November 24, 2014

The construction industry, from project owners and contractors to subcontractors and trades, might be sitting back, ignoring the hype around Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), thinking it’s targeted at “spammers”: faceless entities that bombard us with electronic “junk”. But they shouldn’t get too comfortable; CASL applies to them, too.    In “Complying With Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation

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Legal Update: Complying With Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) – Protecting Directors and Officers from Personal Liability
October 14, 2014

CASL’s anti-spam sections came into force on July 1, 2014. Every organization that CASL affects should now be complying with it – and their directors and officers need to make sure they do. CASL opens directors and officers up to personal liability for violations of it, so every director and officer must think about limiting

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Legal Update: Complying With Canada’s Anti-Spam Law (CASL) – Foreign Organizations Doing Business in Canada Need to Pay Attention
August  1, 2014

Most Canadians have heard about Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL): we’ve been bombarded with “CASL Compliant” emails asking us to “consent” to the sender continuing to send us electronic communications. But what about organizations and people outside of Canada? They may have deleted them assuming they don’t apply to them – in which case, they could

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Privacy & Technology Lawyer David Fraser’s Google Hangout Video: The New Canadian Anti-SPAM Law (CASL) and Your Business
June 26, 2014

The new Canadian Anti-Spam Law (CASL) takes effect on July 1, 2014.  CASL is broad and complicated. Watch leading Canadian Privacy and Technology Lawyer David Fraser of McInnes Cooper’s Google Hangout video about CASL and how it will affect your business.  

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Legal Alert: SCC Protects Internet Users’ Expectation of Privacy In Online Activities in R. v. Spencer
June 16, 2014

On June 13, 2014 the Supreme Court of Canada decided that Canadians have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their online activities, and confirmed that a police investigation isn’t enough to give them the “lawful authority” to get personal information from organizations without a warrant under privacy laws – though it’s not clear what is.

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Legal Alert: Counting Down to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) – The Last Minute Guide to Preparing For CASL
June 12, 2014

The countdown to CASL is almost over: there are only 13 business days until the anti-spam provisions of CASL – and most of the penalties for non-compliance – come into effect.    If you (and/or your organization and/or its members) haven’t done anything to prepare for CASL, here are the 5 most urgent things to

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Legal Alert: SCC Says “Policy Options” Is “Advice” – and Exempt From Access to Information Requests
May 12, 2014

On May 9, 2014 the Supreme Court of Canada decided that policy options that public servants provided to the provincial government are exempt from disclosure as “advice or recommendations” under freedom of information legislation.   The SCC’s decision is based on the interpretation of the words “advice or recommendations” for the purposes of exemption from

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Legal Update: Counting Down to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) –10 Steps to Prepare for CASL
May  8, 2014

On July 1, 2014 – less than two months from now – the anti-spam sections of Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) take effect. Individuals and organizations it affects now have less than two months to create, implement or update their CASL compliance program.     CASL will implement a significant shift in electronic-based communications: it will

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Presentation: Canada’s New Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL)
May  6, 2014

Learn more about Canada’s New Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) in this presentation by David Fraser.    Click here to see the presentation slides.   Click here to visit our CASL Knowledge Page. 

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Legal Update: Counting Down to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) – Does CASL Make You A “Spammer”?
April 15, 2014

The countdown to CASL is on: on July 1, 2014, the anti-spam sections of Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (“CASL”) take effect. Individuals and organizations it affects now have less than three months to create, implement or update their CASL compliance program.     Take our 10 question quiz to find out if CASL affects any of

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Cloud Computing: A Privacy FAQ
March 19, 2014

As organizations turn to cloud computing services, ensuring compliance with legislation and reducing privacy risks is key.   In Canada, there is often a perception that using cloud computing services may be against the law or undermine privacy. This is often not the case. This FAQ Guide will dispel some of the mythology around cloud

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Legal Alert: Counting Down to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) – 10 Reasons Why You Should Care About The Upcoming CASL Right Now
February 28, 2014

On July 1, 2014, the anti-spam sections of Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (aka “CASL”) will take effect. CASL is:  Broad. It applies to just about every person and organization sending commercial electronic messages (CEM) – which isn’t as clear as you’d hope. Complicated. It moves Canada to a permission-based regime for electronic marketing – and imposes

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Legal Update: Counting Down to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) – What You Need to Know Now
February 28, 2014

On July 1, 2014, the anti-spam sections of Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (aka “CASL”) take effect. CASL will apply to just about every business – from sole proprietors and independent contractors, to multinational corporations – and every person sending just about every form of commercial electronic message to, from or within Canada:   CASL Primer. CASL

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Legal Alert: First Decision Under NS Cyber-safety Act
February 12, 2014

On February 11, 2014 the Nova Scotia Supreme Court made its first decision applying the NS Cyber-safety Act – and issued a prevention order.   According to media reports, Andrea Paul, the Chief of the Pictou Landing First Nation, reported that Christopher Prosper – now living in Ontario – sent her numerous threatening messages over

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Legal Alert: Feds Finally Opt-In To Anti-Spam Regulations
December  5, 2013

On December 4, 2013 the Federal Government announced it has finalized the long-awaited and much revised Regulations to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (aka “CASL”) – officially moving Canada from an “opt-out” to an “opt-in” framework for “commercial electronic messages”:   The Laws. CASL was proclaimed in 2010, but has been effectively on hold until the necessary Regulations

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Legal Alert: SCC Decides Union’s Freedom of Expression Trumps Individual Privacy Rights
November 15, 2013

On November 15, 2013 – in an anxiously awaited and groundbreaking decision – the Supreme Court of Canada decided Alberta’s private sector privacy legislation is unconstitutional because it infringes a union’s Charter right to freedom of expression by prohibiting it from videotaping and photographing people crossing the picket line. The decision has reach across Canada:

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Legal Alert: Privacy in Computer Contents – SCC Picks Up Where It Left Off in R. v. Vu
November  8, 2013

On November 7, 2013, the SCC decided police require specific authorization in a search warrant to search the data in a computer because of the privacy interests at stake. In R v. Vu, the SCC continues its development of the law around privacy rights in the contents of computers – including “smart phones” – it

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Legal Update: Cloud Computing and Privacy FAQ
April  7, 2011

Note: Click here to read an updated version of this Legal Update in Cloud Computing: A Privacy FAQ as seen in as seen in CCCA Magazine, Spring 2014.   In Canada, there is often a perception that using cloud computing services may be against the law or may undermine privacy. This is often not the case,

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Bar Admissions

Nova Scotia (2001)

Partner David Fraser comments on Nova Scotia’s Cyber Safety Act
October 28, 2014

McInnes Cooper Privacy lawyer David Fraser was recently quoted in a CBCnews Nova Scotia article regarding the Cyber Safety Act, a law created  to protect people from cyberbullying. Since the law came into affect a year ago there have been over 370 cases of cyberbullying reported.   To view a copy of the full article click here.

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McInnes Cooper Privacy Lawyer David Fraser quoted in Canadian Lawyer & Law Times blog regarding Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL)
October  9, 2014

McInnes Cooper Privacy lawyer David Fraser was recently quoted in a Canadian Lawyer & Law Times blog article regarding recent Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) and the beginning of the CRTC’s enforcement of it.   View a copy of the full article here.   To learn more about CASL, visit McInnes Cooper’s CASL Knowledge Page.

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McInnes Cooper Privacy lawyer David Fraser on the impact of the Supreme Court of Canada’s recent privacy decision on proposed federal Cyberbullying law
June 23, 2014

On June 13, 2014 the Supreme Court of Canada delivered its decision in  R. v. Spencer, 2014 SCC 43. In it, the SCC decided that Canadians have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their online activities, and confirmed that a police investigation isn’t enough to give police the “lawful authority” to get personal information from

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Privacy lawyer David Fraser of McInnes Cooper on the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision that Internet Users have an expectation of Privacy and Anonymity Online
June 13, 2014

On June 13, 2014 the Supreme Court of Canada decided Internet Users have an expectation of privacy and anonymity online in R. v. Spencer.  Read the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in R. v. Spencer here.    Find out what leading Canadian privacy lawyer David Fraser of McInnes Cooper says about the decision:   Read

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David Fraser Comments on Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation – CBC
May  5, 2014

David Fraser, Partner in our Halifax office, recently commented on the slow yet impending implementation of CASL (Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation). He believes that the cumbersome lumping together of legitimate business communications with fraudulent ones will actually have no impact on consumers. Although the legislation surmises to regulate people outside of Canada, authorities will have a

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David Fraser On Privacy in the Toronto Star
May  5, 2014

David Fraser, Partner in our Halifax office, regularly comments on privacy law matters. In this article, he discusses the staggering rate at which government agencies are requesting user data from telecoms and social media companies.   David is recognized as one of Canada’s leading internet, technology, and privacy lawyers.   Read the Toronto Star article

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Federal Court Grants Order Protecting Plaintiffs’ Identities in Medical Marijuana Access Program Privacy Breach Class Action
April 11, 2014

On February 20, 2014, McInnes Cooper made a motion before the Federal Court of Canada asking for a court order protecting the identities of “John Doe” and “Suzie Jones”, the pseudonyms of the proposed representative plaintiffs in two of the proposed class actions against Health Canada for breaching the privacy of members of its Medical

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David Fraser wins 2013 Canadian Legal Blog Award
January  3, 2014

McInnes Cooper congratulates Privacy Lawyer David Fraser who received the 2013 Canadian Legal Blog Award (a.k.a. “Clawbie”) for best Practitioner Blog. The Clawbies highlight great blogs published by the Canadian legal industry.   David provides privacy law advice to many private and public companies in Atlantic Canada, nationally and internationally.  He is a key member

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New Brunswick Local Public Organizations subject to New Right to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (RTIPPA)
September  2, 2012

NB’s Right to Information and Protection of Privacy Act Applies to Additional Organizations Effective September 1 and October 1, 2012.   This is a reminder that NB’s Right to Information and Protection of Privacy Act will cover additional NB bodies on both September 1, 2012 and October 1, 2012.  Effective on September 1, 2012, the

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David Fraser comments on debate over proposed “Protecting Children From Internet Predators Act”
February 16, 2012

David Fraser, @privacylawyer, and Partner at McInnes Cooper, has been called upon various times throughout the week to comment on the Government’s proposed “Protecting Children from Internet Predators Act” formerly known as the Lawful Access Act.   The act seeks to compel Internet Provider’s to release personal information about their users, including names and home

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David Fraser, our Privacy lawyer, interviewed on Protecting Yourself Online
January 26, 2012

Global Maritimes interviewed David Fraser last night on how to protect yourself online and the challenges of doing so when websites cross borders and defamation laws do not.   To watch the extended interview click here.   For more on Privacy Law in Canada, follow David’s blog at blog.privacylawyer.ca

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