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News and discussion on implementing risk management

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How to go beyond the words to craft smarter policies

All of these tips seek to offer ways to make policies and procedures better, but the most important tip is that policies and procedures should not be managed in a vacuum. They are an important element of an effective compliance program without regard to what compliance guidance your organization follows. Ignoring policies can negatively impact compliance conduct, training, monitoring and auditing, investigations – and most importantly and ultimately – the reputation of an organization.

 

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How does the new anti-spam legislation affect IT processes?

It should be clear that managing your anti-spam obligations will mean modifying your information technology processes. The CRTC has created comprehensive anti-spam guidelines that demonstrate some of the ways IT will be involved…

 

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Criminal record checks available free to not-for-profit organizations, starting November 30

Starting November 30, 2013, British Columbia’s government will waive the $20 criminal record check fee for not-for-profit organizations that participate in a program that also offers free expert advice. Under BC law, employers in the volunteer and not-for-profit sector must obtain criminal record checks for job and volunteer candidates if they will work with children or vulnerable adults. The province’s criminal record check program aims to alleviate the financial burden associated with the law.

 

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How do I ensure accountability for IT systems?

One of the key elements needed to ensure accountability is reporting the right statistics and metrics. Each user department is responsible for ensuring that its information technology needs are addressed, and the IT department is responsible for providing overall cost-effectiveness, quality and coordination. The IT department can play its role by ensuring that IT metrics are captured and disseminated. User departments and the IT department must both be involved; neither may be permitted to abdicate its responsibilities.

 

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Can an employee request access to their personnel and payroll files?

In Canada, employees have the right to access information in their personnel and payroll files, provided that it does not interfere with another employee’s privacy rights.

 

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Verdict in Sunrise Propane gas explosion case

A series of explosions at Sunrise Propane’s north Toronto operation in 2010 resulted in the deaths of an employee and a firefighter, forced thousands of nearby residents from their homes and caused millions of dollars in damage. In the aftermath, the company failed to comply with various provincial officer’s orders under the EPA, and at trial the Ontario Court of Justice found the company failed to properly train the employee who died and failed to take reasonable precautions to prevent the explosions under the Occupational Health and Safety Act

 

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Keeping on top of legal requirements: How can I identify legal risks?

There are hundreds of thousands of federal, provincial and municipal statutes and regulations. Laws and regulations exist for virtually every aspect of an organization’s operations—incorporation, employment, safety, environmental, contracts, intellectual property, privacy and so forth. Organizations of all sizes need to be aware of their legal environment and regulations and laws that affect them…

 

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Anti-spam legislation: Time to act on commercial electronic communications

It feels like we’ve been saying this for years now, but, as we reported again last Monday. Canadian businesses can expect new legislation governing commercial electronic communication and spam in the coming months.

 

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Privacy practices for developing mobile applications (apps)

mobile-apps

Privacy practices, and all things mobile, are both hot topics these days. This is in part because mobile devices and apps are fun, cool, provide value, and are on the rise. They are used by professionals of all types, and people of most any age, including our youth. This however feeds the assumption that technology in general, including mobile devices and apps, is threatening the privacy rights of individuals.

 

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Risk-based pension regulation: fancy name, but what does it mean?

The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) is proposing a risk-based system of regulating pension plans. Essentially, this means improving risk assessment and monitoring, following five principles…

 

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Can customers be encouraged to read privacy policies?

When was the last time you read a privacy policy? I use dozens of online services—email, social networking, data storage, banking, photos, shopping, etc.—and I’ve only skimmed a couple. What does this mean for the companies that offer these services? Can they reasonably say that they have informed their users of the content of their policies, if most users simply click “Okay” without bothering to read the things?

 

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Canadian charity law checklist features compliance issues

Charity and non-profit lawyer Mark Blumberg offers a compliance checklist for Canadian charities via the GlobalPhilanthropy.ca charity assistance project.

 

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Do you report your EFTs to FINTRAC?

Chances are you’re no stranger to electronic funds transfers. Broadly speaking, an EFT can mean any type of standard non-paper payment, including debit and credit card payments, email or wire money transfers (both domestic and international) and direct payroll deposits. Most organizations handle at least some of these transactions every day. The key question for businesses is: How do you keep track of these electronic transfers and, if necessary, register them with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada?

 

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Accountants call for national entrepreneurship strategy

Canadians are pretty good at creating businesses that last, according to a new study by the Chartered General Accountants’ Association of Canada. Around 85 percent of new Canadian businesses survive for a year, 62 percent make it at least three years and 51 percent are still going after five years. The Business Development Bank of Canada puts this last number above 66 percent.

 

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