CSIS use of personal data troubles privacy watchdog

OTTAWA – The controversial data-crunching centre run by Canada’s spy agency has long been using personal details gleaned from security clearance forms to help with national security probes – a practice that worries the federal privacy watchdog, newly disclosed letters show.

The correspondence reveals that for at least five years the Canadian Security Intelligence Service‘s Operational Data Analysis Centre has drawn upon private information – provided during security assessments for employment and immigration purposes – to assist with CSIS terrorism and espionage investigations.

The Canadian Press used the Access to Information Act to obtain heavily censored copies of the letters between CSIS and the federal privacy commissioner.

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