OCA refuses to extend intrusion upon seclusion liability to hacked commercial database holders

Craig Lockwood says the trilogy did not diminish privacy interests

By Julius Melnitzer | December 19, 2022

The lawyer for one of the plaintiffs involved in the Ontario Court of Appeal’s recent refusal to expand the tort of intrusion upon seclusion to defendants who fail to adequately protect personal information collected and stored for commercial purposes says the decisions do consumers a disservice.

“The millions of consumers affected by these cases will regard them as travesties because they leave the public without any effective remedy for privacy breaches,” says Christopher Du Vernet of Du Vernet, Stewart in Mississauga, who represented the plaintiff Michael Obodo in Obodo v. Trans Union of Canada. “And the option to sue in negligence is cold comfort for consumers given it has more onerous requirements than the intentional tort of intrusion upon seclusion.”

Obodo and its sister proposed class actions, Owsianik v. Equifax Canada Co. and Winder v. Marriott International, originated when third parties hacked the personal information databases stored by credit bureaus Trans Union and Equifax, and Marriott’s Starwood hotels. READ MORE

Julius Melnitzer is a Toronto-based legal affairs writer, ghostwriter, writing coach and media trainer. Readers can reach him at [email protected] or https://legalwriter.net/contact.


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