Ontario Introduces Cybersecurity Act to Protect People Online

What is the Strengthening Cyber Security and Building Trust in the Public Sector Act, 2024?

The Strengthening Cyber Security and Building Trust in the Public Sector Act, 2024, is a new piece of legislation aimed at enhancing cybersecurity and safeguarding personal information in Ontario. This act includes measures to protect children's data, modernize privacy protections, and establish ethical guidelines for the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the public sector.

The act seeks to:

  • Strengthen Cyber Security in the Public Sector: The legislation targets critical sectors such as hospitals, schools, and children's aid societies, ensuring they can prevent and rapidly respond to cyber threats and attacks. This minimizes service interruptions and ensures continuous operation despite breaches.
  • Safeguard Children's Data: Enhanced privacy protections are included to prevent misuse or sale of student data for predatory marketing, ensuring children are not exploited by technology providers.
  • Modernize Privacy Protections: The act increases the authority of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario (IPC) to investigate and respond to privacy breaches and mandates organizations to complete privacy impact assessments.
  • AI Governance: Establishes a foundation for AI governance to ensure responsible adoption and use of AI technologies, promoting transparency, accountability, and ethical practices.
  • Improve Online Customer Service Delivery: Proposes “tell us once” features to streamline user interactions with government services, reducing errors and improving efficiency.

Why This Matters to MSPs

  • Enhanced Cybersecurity Requirements: Managed Service Providers (MSPs) working with public sector clients in Ontario will need to align their services with the new cybersecurity measures. This includes adopting more robust security protocols and being prepared to respond to cyber threats quickly.
  • Compliance with Privacy Protections: MSPs will need to ensure that their data handling practices comply with the updated privacy protections, particularly when dealing with children's data. This may involve revising data management policies and implementing stricter controls.
  • AI and Emerging Technologies: MSPs involved in AI and emerging technologies will need to follow the new governance guidelines. This includes ensuring that AI applications are used ethically and responsibly, adhering to the new regulations set by the Ontario government.
  • Customer Service Improvements: MSPs offering services to the public sector can benefit from the streamlined processes introduced by the act. By leveraging the “tell us once” features, MSPs can enhance their service delivery, reduce errors, and improve customer satisfaction.

Learn More

If you want more information, here are three resources:

Contact Compliance Scorecard

Stay informed and prepared to meet the new challenges and opportunities presented by this legislation. Learn how Compliance Scorecard can help your MSP align with the new regulations and enhance your service offerings. Contact us today to schedule a live demo or get more information.

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