Jennifer Stoddart

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Jennifer Stoddart
6th Privacy Commissioner of Canada
In office
December 1, 2003 – December 2013
Governor-General Adrienne Clarkson
Prime Minister Jean Chrétien
Preceded by Robert Marleau

Jennifer Stoddart (born 1949) was the sixth Privacy Commissioner of Canada.

Early life and education[edit]

Stoddart was born in 1949 in Toronto. In 1967 she graduated from Neuchâtel Junior College in Switzerland.[1] Fluent in five languages, she studied Quebec social history and received a Master of Arts in history from the Université du Québec à Montréal. In 1980 she received a licence in civil law from McGill University; she was admitted to the bar in 1981. She is married to an architect who teaches urban planning; they have two grown sons.[2]


As a lawyer she worked to modernize regulations and remove barriers to employment based on gender or cultural differences. She headed the Quebec Commission on Access to Information and held senior positions at the Quebec Human Rights and Youth Rights Commission, the Canadian Human Rights Commission and the Canadian Advisory Council on the Status of Women.[2]

On December 1, 2003, Stoddart was appointed Canada's Privacy Commissioner by the Governor in Council for a seven-year term. In December 2010, she was reappointed for a three-year term, which ended in December 2013.

In her role as commissioner she gave an annual report to Parliament about privacy trends and results of investigations, including privacy audits of government departments.[3] Her 2013 report drew attention to privacy problems with the Canada Revenue Agency.[4] She represented Canada at the annual International Conference on Privacy and Personal Data Protection.

In November 2005 a journalist showed Stoddart her own telecommunication-data for the past few months - the ones from her private connection as well as those from the blackberry-systems provided by the government - which he had bought by an online data broker for about $200.

In 2008 she drew international headlines when she announced an investigation into the privacy policies of Facebook, which resulted in the social media site instituting privacy protections for its users.[2]

Stoddart has been active in the Canadian Bar Association and the Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Jennifer Stoddart (NJC '67)". Neuchâtel Junior College. Retrieved 7 September 2014.  External link in |website= (help)
  2. ^ a b c "Jennifer Stoddart: making your privacy her business". The Globe and Mail. December 10, 2010. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  3. ^ "Privacy Commissioner's final report calls for greater care in government handling Canadians' personal information". Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. October 29, 2013. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  4. ^ "Lax security at Canada Revenue leads to privacy breaches". CBC News. October 29, 2013. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 

External links[edit]