PM selects chief legal officer at House of Commons to be next privacy commissioner

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has nominated accomplished lawyer Philippe Dufresne to be the next federal privacy commissioner.

Dufresne is the chief legal officer of the House of Commons and has previously worked as senior general counsel of the Canadian Human Rights Commission.

Philippe Dufresne is the chief legal officer of the House of Commons and has previously worked as senior general counsel of the Canadian Human Rights Commission. (Philippe Dufresne/Linkedin)

The privacy commissioner investigates complaints and publicly reports on how public- and private-sector organizations handle personal information, touching on everything from data breaches to the use of facial-recognition technology.

The commissioner is appointed for a seven-year period following consultation with the leader of each recognized party in the House of Commons and group in the Senate, and after approval by resolution of both Houses of Parliament.

“Mr. Dufresne is a leading legal expert and has a breadth of experience on human rights, administrative, and constitutional law,” said Trudeau in a statement.

“I am confident that he would serve Canadians well in protecting and promoting privacy rights as Privacy Commissioner.”

He would take over from Daniel Therrien, who has been commissioner since 2014.

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