The City of Victoria is committed to protecting your personal information. We respect your right to privacy and any information you provide to us is collected, used and disclosed pursuant to the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA). Described below is our privacy commitment to those who visit our website.
Before providing your personal information via our website, we want you to fully understand how your information will be used or disclosed. This is your right under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA), subject to specific exceptions (e.g., collecting personal information for law enforcement purposes). We believe in transparency, and we're committed to ensuring your privacy.
What is Informed Consent?
Informed consent means that you have the right to know how your personal information will be used, and you should be aware of any potential uses beyond your immediate expectation. For example, you should know if your personal information, provided for paying a parking ticket, may also be used for future communication regarding city services or events. If you have questions about the use and/or disclosure of your personal information, you have the right to seek clarification from our staff. We're here to help you make informed decisions.
Collection, Use, and Disclosure
At the City of Victoria, we are committed to safeguarding your personal information, whether collected through our website or by any other means. Your privacy is our priority, and we want to ensure you have a clear understanding of how your information is managed. Here's what you need to know:
What We Collect
If you're simply browsing our website, you're an anonymous visitor. We don't collect any personal information unless you voluntarily provide it. If you are using the website to access one of the many online services offered by the City, we will need to collect personal information from you. For example, inquiries may require your contact information to confirm your residence in Victoria, follow up with additional information if needed, and respond to your request. We collect only the information necessary to fulfill your specific request.
Use and Disclosure
The personal information collected online is treated with the same care as information collected through other methods. Our commitment is twofold:
- Minimum Data Collection: We collect only the personal information required to fulfill a specific request, such as responding to an inquiry or processing a bill payment.
- Need-to-Know Basis: Your personal information is accessed and disclosed only to the City staff responsible for your request. For example, staff processing bill payments will have access to your payment information, but no more.
Informed Consent (see above)
Before providing your personal information, you have the right to understand how it will be used or disclosed. Informed consent is your right, ensuring transparency in the handling of your data. We believe in full disclosure, so you know if your information may be used for purposes beyond what you initially expected. If you have questions about how your information will be used, please reach out to our staff using the contact information provided below.
Providing your personal information online is entirely optional. It's a service we offer for your convenience, but you always have the right to provide your information using other available methods, such as in person, by mail, or over the phone.
Tracking Your Visit with Cookies
What Are Cookies?
Cookies are small pieces of data that your web browser stores on your computer or mobile device. They help us enhance site functionality and provide a smoother online experience. Our website uses ‘session cookies,’ which are temporary cookies that are only stored during your website visit. They are essential for you to navigate the site efficiently, and they are automatically deleted when you leave. Cookies help us understand what information is being accessed and pages of our site are most popular, allowing us to improve our content and services.
No Personal Information in Cookies
We do not store personal information, like your name or email address, in cookies. The data stored is typically related to your browsing behaviour on our site. Information that is collected includes:
- Your device’s IP address (a number that identifies your device when accessing the internet),
- Your device’s web browser and operating system,
- The date and time of your visit,
- The webpages you accessed, the order each page was accessed, the duration each page was viewed, and the items on each page that you interacted with.
- The first and last webpage you access during a session on our website.
Your Cookie Choices
You have the ability to manage cookies. Most web browsers allow you to control how cookies are used. You can set your browser to accept, reject, or notify you when a cookie is placed on your device. Keep in mind that rejecting cookies may affect your ability to access certain features on our website.
Protection of Personal Information
At the City of Victoria, we take the protection of your personal information seriously. We are dedicated to ensuring that your data remains secure and confidential. Here's how we safeguard your information.
We implement a range of security measures to mitigate risks such as unauthorized access, collection, use, disclosure, or disposal of your personal information, in accordance with Section 30 of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA). These measures are integrated into the design, implementation, and day-to-day operations of managing personal information, whether it's held electronically or in paper format. Our security measures include:
- Secure Online Transaction Software: Our online services comply with industry standards and requirements, ensuring your transactions are conducted securely.
- Authentication: We use a variety of authentication methods to prevent unauthorized access. These methods include securing information via passwords as well as through Multi-Factor Authentication and Single-Sign On.
- Policies and Procedures: We maintain policies and procedures designed to ensure compliance with FIPPA's privacy provisions.
Storage of Personal Information
All personal information collected via our website is stored on servers that have undergone a Privacy Impact Assessment. We want you to feel confident that your data is held in a secure environment. The City may store personal information outside of Canada in accordance with s. 33.1 of FIPPA. Any decision to store personal information outside of Canada will be assessed by a Privacy Impact Assessment, in accordance with s. 69 of FIPPA.
It's important to note that the protection of your personal information applies to our website only. When you access external websites through links on our website, including the Victoria Police Department website, we cannot guarantee the same level of protection for your data. We recommend reviewing the privacy policies of external websites you visit.
Access, Correction, and Complaints regarding your Personal Information
We want to ensure that you have control over your personal information, and we are committed to transparency and accountability. You can exercise your rights and voice your concerns by following the steps below.
Access to Your Personal Information
The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) provides you with the right to access your personal information, subject to limited exceptions outlined in Section 2 of FIPPA. If you wish to access the personal information we have on record, please reach out to us using the contact information provided below.
Correction of Your Personal Information
You also have the right to request corrections to your personal information. Typically, this pertains to factual information, such as your gender, date of birth, or contact details. While personal opinions are generally not correctable, they can be annotated to express disagreement. To initiate a correction request, please contact us using the information below.
Complaints Regarding Your Personal Information
If you believe that your personal information is being managed in a way that is not authorized by FIPPA, you have the right to voice your concerns. If you are unsatisfied with our response to your complaint, you have the option to escalate the matter further.
Contact the City: You can file a complaint with the City of Victoria. We take your concerns seriously and will make every effort to address and resolve them. See the final section on this page for details.
Contact the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner: If you remain unsatisfied with our response, you have the right to contact the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner. They serve as an independent authority overseeing privacy matters. The OIPC can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or in writing:
Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia
PO Box 9038 Stn. Prov. Govt.
Victoria B.C. V8W 9A4
Further information can be found on the OIPC's website.
Contact the City
If you have any questions regarding this privacy statement or would like to make a request regarding your information, please contact the privacy office by email or by phone at 250.385.5711.
This privacy statement is current to October 23, 2023.