CIPPIC Files Intervention Factum in SCC Health Data Case

Posted on Monday, January 8, 2018

The Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC) has filed an intervention factum in the Supreme Court of Canada case, Her Majesty the Queen in Right of British Columbia v. Philip Morris International, Inc., SCC No. 37524.  

In this case, the Supreme Court has been called to examine the conflict that arises between privacy and transparency when a defendant in an action seeks to access large health datasets to challenge the results of a plaintiff’s analysis of the dataset. This is a timely and important issue as society’s use and reliance on big data and algorithmic decision-making technologies continue to increase.

The CIPPIC team received input from professor Teresa Scassa, Canada Research Chair in Information Law and member of the Centre. 

According to CIPPIC, the “conflict between privacy and transparency will be mediated by the dual protections of anonymization procedures, implemented in accordance with guidelines familiar to the health industry, and flexible judicial safeguards embedded in disclosure orders.”


  • See the Supreme Court of Canada’s case summary here.
  • See CIPPIC’s blog post here.
  • See CIPPIC's intervention factum here.
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