Rogers sees drop in customer info requests from government and police

OTTAWA — Rogers Communications says it saw a sharp drop in the number of requests for customer information from government and police agencies last year — a result of swelling public concern and a landmark court ruling on telecommunications privacy.

In a report released today, Rogers — which owns Maclean’s — says it received fewer than 114,000 such requests for subscriber information in 2014, down from almost 175,000 the previous year.

Last summer, the company said it would no longer routinely give basic customer information to police and security agencies without a warrant.

The move followed a key Supreme Court of Canada ruling as well as concerns voiced by subscribers, the telecom provider said at the time.

Last June, the Supreme Court ruled police need judicial authorization to get personal information about customers from Internet providers.

The high court rejected arguments that claimed the federal privacy law governing companies allowed providers to hand over subscriber identities voluntarily.