Protecting Canadians from Online Crime Act (Bill C-13)

Bob Dechert: Mr. Speaker, the member mentioned in her speech that she thinks this bill should be split into two pieces, one being a specific criminal provision having to do with the non-consensual distribution of intimate images, and everything else, that is, any investigative power, in a separate bill.

First, I did not hear from her what additional witnesses she thinks should come before the committee, since the committee had extensive hearings on this issue. My colleagues on the opposite side who were on the justice committee will confirm that.

Second, I wonder if the member has read the CCSO Cybercrime Working Group report, “Cyberbullying and the Non-consensual Distribution of Intimate Images”, and, in particular, recommendation number 4 of that report, which says:

The Working Group recommends that the investigative powers contained in the Criminal Code be modernized…. These amendments should include, among others:

Data preservation demands and orders;

New production orders to trace a specified communication;

New warrants and production orders for transmission data;

Improving judicial oversight while enhancing efficiencies in relation to authorizations, warrants and orders;

Other amendments to existing offences and investigative powers that will assist in the investigation of cyberbullying and other crimes that implicate electronic evidence.

How can the member stand here and say that we do not need these investigative powers to prevent the next Rehtaeh Parsons or Amanda Todd case from happening?

I would like to know if the member agrees with recommendation number 4 or if she disagrees with any of the parts of recommendation number 4.

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, we know that the Criminal Code contains a lot of the measures we need for investigating cybercrime. The current Criminal Code contains the following:

For greater certainty, no production order is necessary for a peace officer or public officer enforcing or administering this or any other Act of Parliament to ask a person to voluntarily provide to the officer documents, data or information that the person is not prohibited by law from disclosing.

We know that we can do more. We can track down cyberbullying. We want to support law enforcement. However, we always need to bear in mind that our role here, as members of Parliament, is to hold to account a government that is increasingly exercising abusive powers in terms of the way bills are rammed through this House and in terms of the new powers given to the state to intrude into the lives of Canadians. We have continually less respect for civil liberties and more trust in the idea that Big Brother can handle things.

I submit that the existing Criminal Code elements go quite far in giving us the powers that we need, and this bill would go too far.