Privacy Watchdog Says RCMP Unlawfully Used Cellphone-Tracking Machines 6 Times
According to a report released by Canada’s privacy commissioner, the RCMP used unlawful cellphone tracking technology six times.
These devices are known as “IMSI catchers,” which can intercept and identify cellphone metadata. The CBC report found the device being used in recent months in close proximity to Parliament Hill and the U.S. and Israeli embassies.
Between 2011 and 2016 the RCMP used IMSI catchers in 125 criminal investigations, where 29 of those cases were in support of other Canadian law enforcement agencies. Six of these cases, however, took place during a time where the RCMP was under the impression that no warrant was required.
This period in which no warrants were required went on from March to June 2015. However, in June 2015 the National Wiretap Expert Committee (NWEC), which provides legal advice to law enforcement and prosecutors, once again required the RCMP to obtain a warrant before using the tracking device.