The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada ("OPC") released details yesterday about research it conducted that found that many popular websites were "leaking" users' personal information to third-party sites.

In July and August of this year, the OPC reviewed 25 popular websites targeting Canadians in a range of sectors (media, shopping and travel services) and identified "significant privacy concerns." Specifically, the OPC found that 11 organizations were leaking personal information -- disclosing personal information to third parties (such as advertising and analytics companies), through such methods as web requests and cookies.

The Commissioner has refrained from exercising her discretion to publicly name the organizations in these circumstances but has sent letters to the 11 organizations requesting information about their practices and explanations of how they will correct problems and ensure compliance with applicable privacy law.

For details, see the OPC's News Release and Backgrounder.