Annexes concerning the exchange of information on a case-by-case basis with Australia and New Zealand (operating under the bilateral Memoranda Regarding the Exchange of Information with Australia and New Zealand respectively)

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has a longstanding information sharing relationship with counterpart organizations in Australia and New Zealand.

Existing bilateral arrangements have recently been re-negotiated to reflect a modernized privacy landscape and to more accurately reflect roles and responsibilities within participating organizations, including the Canada Border Services Agency’s immigration enforcement function.

Information exchange on a case-by-case basis may only be undertaken by a designated official for a specific reason related to the purpose of administering or enforcing immigration and citizenship laws. Case-by-case exchanges may comprise the exchange of both biographic and biometric information. Exchanges must always be necessary, relevant and proportionate.

The Privacy Impact Assessment report examines the authority under which Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada undertakes case-by-case information exchanges, the types of information that may be exchanged and the measures and safeguards being adopted to ensure exchanges meet modern privacy standards.

Specific measures that will be employed to protect privacy:

  • A formal designation process will be undertaken and resulting designations will be communicated widely within IRCC, with the CBSA and with Australia and New Zealand.
  • Officers will be clearly instructed on the importance of marking information that is exchanged. A new Global Case Management System ‘activity’ for case-by-case exchange will be introduced to make notations easier. Training will further emphasize the importance of this issue.
  • Bilateral correction procedures will be clearly established with Australia and New Zealand and communicated via program delivery Instructions.

The Department is also committed to:

  • ensuring that procedures related to retention and disposal of information are clearly established;
  • requiring robust mechanisms to track and audit information sharing to ensure compliance with data security and privacy requirements;
  • using encryption and other security tools to protect files that are shared; and
  • regular reviews and quality assurance checks to ensure information safeguards are working.

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