Canadian data protection authority issues proposals for regulating AI

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) has published a set of recommendations to reform the country’s Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA), to ensure that an adequate legal framework is in place to help reap the benefit of artificial intelligence (AI) while upholding individuals’ fundamental right to privacy. The document, titled ‘A Regulatory Framework for AI: Recommendations for PIPEDA Reform’, is built on feedback received in response to a public consultation the OPC launched in January 2020. In the OPC’s view, an appropriate legal framework for AI would allow personal information to be used for new purposes towards responsible AI innovation and for social benefits. Such uses would have to be authorised within a rights based framework that embed privacy as a human right and as a key element for the exercise of other fundamental rights. The legislation would also include provisions related to automated decision-making, to ensure transparency, accuracy, and fairness. In addition, businesses would be required to demonstrate accountability to the regulator upon request, including proactive inspections and other enforcement measures through which the regulator would ensure compliance with the law.