(Joe Wolverton, II, J.D.) A provision in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement, to which Canada and the United States are parties, makes it “quite likely” that the private banking details of Canadian citizens could be “accessible to American security intelligence agencies,” according to a member of the Canadian parliament.
Speaking on May 12 in the House of Commons, Parliament member Guy
Caron warned fellow lawmakers that the sprawling surveillance state to
the south of Canada could soon swallow up private banking data in
“Right now, Canadian data, such as banking information and
confidential information, are stored on Canadian servers, which are
obviously not accessible to the United States at the moment and do not
fall within the scope of the USA Patriot Act,” Caron said. “However, the
provision that requires these types of data to be stored on Canadian
servers may be removed. It is therefore quite likely that these data
could be stored on servers on American soil, where they would be
accessible to American security intelligence agencies.”
David Lametti, member of Parliament from Quebec, said he was familiar
with this criticism, but dismissed it as part of a necessary “quid pro
quo” with the United States and other TPP signatories.
“There is a quid pro quo because a number of Canadian companies in
the financial services and insurance sector have told us that the
cross-border flow of data is very important,” Lametti said.
Economic growth in Canada “is directly linked to international
trade,” Lametti added. “The government strongly supports free trade as a
way to open markets to Canadian goods and services, grow Canadian
businesses, and create good-paying middle-class jobs.”
Goods and services aren’t the only things that will be freely traded
across the border. Banking data will be packaged and transmitted to
servers in the United States where U.S. intelligence gathering
organizations would undoubtedly rejoice at the reception of such a large
cache of critical financial data without the need of a warrant.
Then, that data would become subject to the provisions of the PATRIOT Act. As explained in the Canadian edition of the Huffington Post:
The combined effect of these U.S. laws is that many users fear that
once their information is stored in the U.S., it will be accessible to
U.S. authorities without suitable privacy protections or oversight.
Since U.S. law provides less privacy protection to foreigners, there is
indeed limited legal recourse for Canadian data held in the U.S.
In November 2013, portions of the TPP draft agreement published by WikiLeaks contained sketches of President Obama’s plans to surrender American sovereignty to international tribunals.
Another WikiLeaks disclosure in January of
the next year revealed that the president was attempting to surrender
sovereignty over U.S. environmental policy to international bureaucrats
interested in lowering those standards to mirror those of our TPP
U.S. copyright laws, Internet freedom, and web-based publishing can
be obliterated by the TPP, and, although it hasn’t been widely reported,
the TPP grants to the global government sweeping surveillance powers,
Canadian opposition to the data dump isn’t new. Negotiators for our
neighbors to the north denounced the emigration of electronic data early
on the agreement’s history.
A reported published in 2014 by Vice exposed Canada’s attempt to block the proposed surveillance scheme:
America is, essentially, the world’s data server. Since the dawn of
the internet itself, every database of import has been hosted in the
grand US of A. But now, foreign governments are starting to see the
benefit of patriating their citizens’ private information.
Canada was an early adopter of the idea. Federal procurement
regulations often require government departments to insert local data
requirements, stating that businesses who wish to administer or host
Canadians’ information must keep the information within Canadian
borders. Most recently, the Canadian Government put out a tender
for a company to merge and host the email servers for all their
departments. In doing so, they stuck in a national security exemption,
forbidding foreign contractors from applying.
Nova Scotia and British Columbia went a step further, flatly
requiring any government-hosted personal data to be physically located
Of course, American trade representatives wouldn’t brook this patriotic protection of Canadian’s personal data.
Again, from Vice:
But the American government is not having any of it and is using TPP
negotiations to strong-arm new provisions that favour American hosted
“In today’s information-based economy, particularly where a broad
range of services are moving to ‘cloud’ based delivery where U.S. firms
are market leaders; this law hinders U.S. exports of a wide array of
products and services,” reads a report on Canada from the office of the United States trade commissioner.
The Americans aren’t even making secret their insistence on the matter. On the American website for
the trade deal, it clearly states there’s a priority for the TPP to
include: “requirements that support a single, global Internet, including
ensuring cross-border data flows, consistent with governments’
legitimate interest in regulating for purposes of privacy protection.”
One provision of the TPP agreement would authorize American
corporations to sue Ottawa should Canadian interests interfere with the
“data flow provisions” of the agreement.
What makes the TPP agreement so extreme is that it could allow those
corporations to sue governments that don’t respect the data flow
It’s two years on, the TPP agreement is complete, and the Canadians
have walked back their insistence on domestic storage of electronic
A majority of Parliament now considers the TPP “the best opportunity
to strengthen the multilateral trading system and develop rules that
protect Canada’s economic interests.”
Something more than private banking data is being transferred by the TPP: national sovereignty.
Economic and political integration that is central to the TPP’s
purpose will push the once-independent United States of America into yet
another collectivist bloc that will facilitate the complete dissolution
of our nation and our states into no more than impotent members of a
Each of the “partners” to the pact, including foreign corporations,
would be exempted from abiding by American laws governing trade
disputes. Moreover, the sovereignty of the United States and the
Constitution’s enumeration of powers would once again be sacrificed on
the altar of global government by subordinating U.S. laws passed by duly
elected representatives of the people to a code of regulations created
by a team of transnational bureaucrats.