New law to let Canadian officials share immigrants’ personal info

This Past Friday (Feb 27, 2015) government of Canada has announced a plan as part of its effort to strengthen National Security and to crack down on Immigration Fraud. Under those proposed changes, Canada Immigration and Citizenship Agency will be able to share personal information to and from other Government agencies like immigration and border enforcement officials, Employment Canada, Revenue Canada, the RCMP and other provincial bodies.

The information sharing will not be limited to just Immigrants. Ottawa’s proposed changes also effect Canadian Citizens. Here is a link to Canada Gazette that came this past weekend. (Page 364-365 talks about the information sharing).

CIC can now access information from your Tax returns to your travel documents. This definitely makes it harder for those people who some times do not declare their time outside Canada whether for work purposes or otherwise. In past this issue has been much debated. Many families live in a situation where part of the family members stay in Canada and part of them stay outside to work. In the end they all get citizenship by lying on their applications.

CIC can also get information about petty to big criminal offenses and that can help them in evaluating the citizenship application of certain applicants.
In coming months we will see more refinement of this plan but this we can say, Goverment is serious when they say “Immigration is a privilege and not a right”. You have to prove your worth!

Here is an article written in thestar talking about those changes.
Some Excerpts

The plan, published Friday, would allow information sharing between border enforcement officials, Employment and Social Development Canada, Canada Revenue Agency, the RCMP and the regulator of immigration consultants, as well as other federal and provincial bodies.

“There is a need to clarify and make explicit the legislative authority for CIC (Citizenship and Immigration Canada) to share personal information through its different business lines and with these partners,” it said.

………………

According to the plan, the revenue agency would play a key role in the new information regime as the changes would let immigration authorities access the secure Income Verification Program as a source to identify “possible false representation, fraud, concealment of material circumstances, or discrepancies” provided by immigration and citizenship applicants.
The information sharing, said the proposal, is meant to allow authorities to crack down on fraud, validate citizenship status for government services, authenticate the identity or status of individuals and “proactively” alert other officials of changes in their immigration status.

Click here for full article.

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