A Podcast Called INTREPID

Discussing and debating Canadian national security law and politics

Ep 62 Who Security Screens the Watchers?

Stephanie and Craig are back with a brief update on bill C-59 and its trajectory through the Senate. We then update listeners on the appeal of a case we discussed in Ep 48, concerning whether CSIS may conduct foreign intelligence intercepts of some sort outside of Canada. Then we get to our headline topic: security screening and clearances, with an eye to the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians (NSICoP). This discussion is sparked by the alleged extortion attempt against Tony Clement, a NSICoP member, over photos communicated via electronic means. There is no allegation this attempted crime was aimed at NSICoP information. But this development has sparked reporting and discussion of how NSICoP members are security screened. The government is holding that information close to chest, but we walk through how we think it should work, based on the NSICoP Act, the Security of Information Act and the Government Standard on Security Screening. We also debate whether screening of parliamentarians to Top Secret should be as thorough as it is for executive officials.