City Clerk's Office

How We Manage Information

A key service of Corporate Information Management Services is to make records accessible and available. To do this, we develop guidelines and provide expertise to City divisions to manage records from the time they are created through to how they are handled and eventually destroyed or archived.

The City must balance two principles when handling information:

  1. City records should be available to everyone, with few exceptions
  2. Personal information must be kept private.

Everyone who works for the City is expected to handle their records responsibly, so that the City's interests and the privacy rights of the public are protected. The City follows federal and provincial laws, and has its own policies and by-laws about how to handle information.

 

Information Management

Principles of Managing Information

The City is responsible for maintaining its records so they can support governance and efficient business processes. The City Clerk's Office is responsible for the proper classification and storage of records. Effective classification and storage is important because it:

  • helps make sure records can be found when needed for operational, legal or financial reasons
  • ensures that privacy and freedom of information are protected
  • is required by more than 200 federal and provincial statutes.

Information held by the City is expected to be public, except for limited and specific reasons, such as protecting the privacy of individuals. Any information held by government should in general be available to the public. More information is available on our web page that covers Freedom of Information.

Online Privacy Statement

The City of Toronto is committed to protecting the privacy of any personal information you may provide when visiting our website. Part of that commitment is to explain what information may be collected and why, how it will be used and who may have access to it. Our practices have been designed to ensure compliance with the privacy provisions of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

This privacy statement applies to interactions with the City of Toronto's web server. It does not apply to any other website. Following is an overview of our website practices.

Personal information
When you visit City of Toronto websites, you do so anonymously — there is no need to tell us who you are. If you direct an enquiry to a City division, we will ask you to provide your name and mailing address or email address for the purpose of responding to your enquiry. Only those who "need to know" will have access to the personal information provided.

Encryption technology protects personal information during transmission. A notice stating "you are in a secure site" will be posted on City sites when you are in an encrypted session. A security icon will also appear in either the lower left corner or, depending on your browser, the lower right corner of your browser window. Secure pages are not saved in temporary caches on a computer. Once you exit secure screens, those screens cannot be accessed again. If encryption is not available through a site, an alternative means of communication will be recommended.

The City web server does not collect or retain your e-mail address in a database format although some Internet Service Providers may automatically include your e-mail address with your IP address (Internet Protocol).

Any City site where personal information is requested will contain a notice outlining our legal authority to collect it and include the following information:

  • the purpose for collecting the personal information;
  • how it will be used and who will have access to it;
  • who to contact if you have any questions about these practices.

Personal information is only disposed of according to a records retention schedule. To ensure personal information is unrecoverable, a utility program is used to remove the electronic data and any paper records generated are shredded.

Logging practices
The City of Toronto logs HTTP requests to the City Web server. These logs record the IP address of site visitors. An IP address is the number automatically assigned to the computer or to the ISP (Internet Service Provider) requesting a URL. The City cannot identify you from this information. The City archives and uses log files for systems analysis, maintenance and site evaluation.

We do not link information with the identity of individuals visiting our sites unless an attempt to damage our site has been detected.

Cookie practices
Some City web pages use cookies for one of the following three practices:

  • Single-session cookies, which log users over a single session and do not maintain data over multiple sessions or visits,
  • Multi-session cookies for use in web analytics, which log users over multiple sessions purely to gather data to analyze web traffic statistics, and
  • Multi-session cookies for use as persistent identifiers (persistent cookies), which log users activities over multiple visits with the intent of remembering data, settings, or preferences unique to that visitor.

The City’s website uses persistent cookies to improve users’ experience by remembering settings related to functionality. Other multi-session and single-session cookies are used in combination with the website’s analytics software for website improvements.

You have the ability to accept or decline cookies. All Web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can modify your browser settings to decline cookies if you prefer.

By declining cookies, use of interactive features or online services that depend on cookies will not function as intended. If you choose to accept cookies, all browsers offer the ability to later delete cookies that you have accepted. If you choose to delete cookies, any settings and preferences controlled by those cookies will be deleted and may need to be automatically recreated upon a return visit.

Comments?
We welcome any comments and suggestions about this site. Please contact us at webdevelopers@toronto.ca or visit toronto.ca/comment.

If you have any questions about the City's website collection, use and disclosure practices, please contact Corporate Information Management Services at infomgmt@toronto.ca or call us at 416-392-9684.