Workshop – The BC Services Card: Privacy Risks, Opportunities and Alternatives

April 26, 2013

SFU Woodwards, World Arts Centre; 149 W. Hastings St. Downtown Vancouver
1:00 pm
The BCCLA, in collaboration with the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, is pleased to offer this free public workshop to mark the launch of our research report on the BC Services Card.
  • Time: 1:00-5:00 pm, followed by a reception from 5:00-7:00 pm
  • Location: SFU Woodwards, World Art Centre
  • Free & open to the public
  • Register by completing the form at the bottom of this page.

This half-day workshop gathers internationally renowned experts and advocates in privacy, surveillance and computer security, as well as government and industry representatives, to publicly discuss and debate these pressing issues. It is also the launch of the BCCLA’s report on the BC Services Card.

Speakers Include:

  • Micheal Vonn, Policy Director, BCCLA
  • Christian Paquin, Microsoft Research
  • Dr. Andrew Clement, University of Toronto; Policy Director of the Identity, Privacy & Security Institute
  • Dr. Kate Milberry, Researcher, BCCLA
  • Vincent Gogolek, Executive Director, Freedom of Information & Privacy Association
  • Bradley Weldon, Policy Analyst, Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of BC
  • Christopher Parsons, University of Victoria; Block G Privacy and Security Consulting


For the last several years, the B.C. government has been developing the technical infrastructure and legal framework for a comprehensive identity card system. This February, it introduced the BC Services Card, a mandatory provincial ID card that replaces the old health CareCard and allows for the layering of a range of government services, beginning with the driver’s licence. Significantly, the card represents unprecedented changes in the way the government collects, accesses and shares personal information—including highly sensitive health information—amongst departments, agencies and even private contractors.

The card is just part of BC’s wide-ranging vision for integrated identity information management—a vision that scales and interoperates on a federal level. In addition to the well known risk of security breaches associated with such ID systems, privacy-related questions loom large.

  • What is the capacity for this new data-linking scheme to enable government to profile and track its citizens across a range of government services via thousands of data portals, accessible by untold numbers of users?
  • As a public-private partnership, how will the card program resist the monetization of personal information?
  • Is this indeed a prelude to a national ID card? What are the implications for democracy in the era of Government 2.0?


Registration is now closed.


This event is funded by the Privacy Commissioner of Canada as part of the BCCLA’s research project on the BC Services Card. Click here to learn more about this project.