Canada shelves C-30 cyber snooping law

The Canadian internet surveillance legislation, Bill C-30, is as dead in the water as a freshly clubbed harp seal.

The bill, which was sponsored by Public Safety Minister Vic Toews, aimed to force ISPs to hand over any data that police wanted.

It was famous for Toews telling the world and its dog that if they did not back it, they supported child pornographers.

Federal and provincial privacy commissioners strongly objected to the bill as an unjustified violation of privacy rights.

It appears that it was Toews’ child pornographers comment which killed the bill as it showed the law to be just pretty nasty and silly.

According to the Globe and Mail, the government backed down, declaring the bill needed further study, and nothing happened.

House Leader Peter Van Loan decided to send C-30 to the public safety committee first, where it is supposed to be extensively revised, before returning to the House for a second and third reading.

But before it can do that, it has to be debated for at least five hours and that requires it to be booked in for a day’s shouting. So far it has not turned up on the booking list.

The Conservatives could send C-30 to the public safety committee in the autumn. But it would take months to rewrite the bill, and then weeks to get it through the second and third reading, which is unlikely to happen.