Protection of Personal Information

The key to protecting privacy under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) is the diligent and responsible management of personal information held by the University of Guelph.

The University is committed to respecting the privacy of those who work and study here with excellent personal information management practices:

  • Notice of collection is provided wherever personal information is collected, making clear the purpose of collection and uses of the information [s.39(2)]
  • Files are stored securely and access to them is limited to authorized persons

A list of Personal Information Banks is made available to ensure transparency in the ways that information is used and stored and the legal authority under which the information is used and stored [s.45]

What is Personal Information?

Personal information includes information about one’s age, race, sex, marital status, educational and medical history, unique numbers such as SIN or student numbers, and one’s name when used in conjunction with another identifying piece of information. 

It is important for all personally identifiable information to be kept secured. For instance, student numbers should not be revealed on class lists because it would be too easy for someone to track that number to a person’s name, address, grades, and other personal information.

Disclosure of Personal Information

The University of Guelph adheres to FIPPA legislation regarding the way that personal information is disclosed [s.42(1)].

Personal information can only be disclosed:

  • Where the individual has consented to the disclosure
  • For the purpose for which the information was compiled or for a consistent purposed (as indicated in the Notice of Collection)
  • Where disclosure is necessary and proper in the discharge of the University’s functions – information will not be collected or used if it is not necessary
  • Where the information is a matter of public record
  • For law enforcement purposes
  • In compelling circumstances affecting the health or safety of an individual
  • To the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario