Several people have written over the past couple of weeks to call attention to the privacy implications of the Canada.com FAQ. The FAQ asks the question about where Canada.com email account information will be stored with the answer that:
canada.com e-mail (the "Service") is provided by Velocity Services, Inc. ("VSI"), a company located in and conducting its business from the United States. By registering for and/or logging on to the Service, you accept and acknowledge that the information processed or stored outside of Canada may be available to the foreign government of the country in which the information or the entity controlling it, is situated under a lawful order made in that jurisdiction and no longer falls under the jurisdiction of Canada's Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act ("PIPEDA") nor be subject to canada.com's Privacy Statement.
As David Fraser rightly notes "I'm pretty confident that you can't wave a magic wand and say that PIPEDA no longer applies."
Web 2.0 services raise a host of privacy issues, few more than web-based email, which potentially leaves thousands of sensitive, personal email messages in the hands of email providers. The Canada.com approach does little to inspire confidence about the protection of that personal information.