Your Privacy Rights
From January 1, 2004, organizations engaged in commercial activities must comply with the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (the "Act"). In certain situations, organizations may also be subject to provincial privacy legislation. The Company is responsible for the personal information we collect, use, maintain and disclose. To ensure this accountability, we have developed this policy, and trained our staff about our policies and practices.
What is "personal information"?
Personal information is any information that identifies you, or by which your identity could be deduced. It does not include your name, business address, business title, professional designation(s) or business telephone number.
Why do we collect your personal information?
We will collect personal information about you to help us make credit decisions about you as a potential customer, prevent fraud, check your identity and prevent money-laundering. To fulfill these purposes, we may, on occasion, request information about you from the files of consumer reporting agencies, and based on the results of our credit investigations, we may not be able to extend credit to you. Once you have a mortgage with us, we may share your credit experience on an ongoing basis with other lenders and credit reporting agencies. You cannot withdraw your consent for the sharing of information as it is necessary to support the credit process.
We may also collect personal information from you and from others about you to:
- Collect on any debts owing by you to us;
- Administer our file with respect to your mortgaged property; and
- Inform you about products or services that we may feel are of interest to you.
How do we collect your personal information?
We collect information only by lawful and fair means and not in an unreasonably intrusive way. Wherever possible we collect personal information directly from you, but we may also obtain information about you from other sources, for example:
- Credit bureau agencies;
- Real estate appraisers;
- Mortgage brokers; and
- Your bank(s) or other financial institutions.
In most cases, we shall ask you to provide explicit consent, if we collect, use, or disclose your personal information. Normally, we ask for your consent in writing, but in some circumstances, we may accept your verbal consent. Sometimes, your consent may be implied through your conduct with us.
Use of Your Information
We use your personal information to manage risk, verify your identity, to make credit decisions about you for financing or renewal purposes, to collect debts that you may owe to us, to administer our file with respect to your mortgaged property after closing and to communicate with you, for instance through email or mail, during the life of your mortgage about your mortgage, other products and/or services, or other mortgage-related information. Your information is also used to satisfy valid information requests from regulators and other organizations or individuals who are legally entitled to make such request. We may contact you occasionally either by mail, telephone or email, or all of these methods with direct marketing offers that may be of benefit to you. If you tell us that you no longer wish to receive information about other products or services, or other mortgage-related information, we will not send any further such material.
The Company does not disclose your personal information to any third party to enable them to market their products and services without your consent.
Disclosure of your Personal Information
Under certain circumstances, the Company will disclose your personal information:
- when we are required or authorized by law to do so, for example if a court issues a subpoena, search warrant, court order or other demand or enquiry which we believe to be valid. We may disclose information to an investigative body in the case of a breach of agreement or contravention of law to help prevent fraud, money laundering or other criminal activity;
- when you have consented to the disclosure;
- when the services we are providing to you require us to give your information to a third party your consent will be implied, unless you tell us otherwise;
- where it is necessary to establish or collect amounts owed to us;
- if the information is already publicly known; or
- if we sell, pledge or assign your mortgage or loan, or securitize it, sell parts of our business, or merge or amalgamate with other entities we may release the information we hold about you to the prospective purchaser or assignee as part of due diligence and on completion of the transaction, subject to confidentiality restrictions.
The Company does not sell or rent customer lists or personal information to others.
Updating Your Information
Since we use your personal information to provide services to you, it is important that the information be accurate and up-to-date. If any of your information changes, please inform us so that we can make any necessary changes.
Is My Personal Information Secure?
The Company takes all reasonable precautions to ensure that your personal information is kept safe from loss, unauthorized access, modification or disclosure.
Among the steps taken to protect your information are:
- premises security;
- restricted file access to personal information;
- deploying technological safeguards such as security software and firewalls to prevent hacking or unauthorized computer access;
- internal password and security policies; and
- Confidentiality agreements with any third parties we engage to provide administrative services to us.
Access to Your Personal Information
You may ask for access to any personal information we hold about you. Summary information is available on request. More detailed requests which require archive or other retrieval costs may be subject to a reasonable administration fee.
If the Company holds information about you and if you can establish that it is not accurate, complete and up-to-date, the Company will take reasonable steps to correct it.
Can I be Denied Access to My Personal Information?
Your rights to access your personal information are not absolute.
We may deny access when:
- denial of access is required or authorized by law;
- when granting you access would have an unreasonable impact on other people's privacy;
- to protect the Company's rights and property; or
- where the request is frivolous or vexatious.
If we deny your request for access to, or refuse a request to correct information, we shall explain why. The Company does not use your Social Insurance Number as a way of identifying or organizing the information we hold about you.
Respecting your preference
We will explain your options of refusing or withdrawing consent to the collection, use or release of your information, and, given reasonable notice, we will record and respect your choices. In most cases you are free to refuse or withdraw your consent at anytime. You may do so by contacting our office at 1-877-369-6398. Our staff will explain your options and any consequences of refusing or withdrawing your consent and record your choices.
How Long do you Keep my Personal Information?
We keep your personal information for seven years after the later of a) the date of your latest application to us, and b) the date that all of your loans/mortgages with us have expired or were terminated.
Communicating with Us
If you have any questions, concerns or problems about privacy, confidentiality or how a request for information was handled, we encourage you to let us know. If you choose to mail, fax or email us, please include your full name, address and telephone number. You should be aware that email is not a 100% secure medium and is generally unencrypted, and you should be aware of this when contacting us to send personal or confidential information.
We use your email address to acknowledge your comments and/or reply to your questions, and we will store your communication and our reply in the event we correspond further. We will not sell your email address to anyone outside the Company. We may use your email address to send you information about offers on products and services that we believe may be of interest to you. If you don't want us to contact you with email offers on products and services, you may tell us at any time.
Request for Access
If you have any questions, or wish to access your personal information, please write to our Privacy Officer at:
First Canadian Place
Suite 5300, P.O. Box 410, 100 King St West
Toronto, ON M5X 1E3
Phone 1-877-369-6398; 416-366-4321, business hours 8:30a to 5:00p EST, Monday to Friday
We will work hard to provide an acceptable solution but if you are not satisfied, the problem will be escalated to a Sr. Manager.
Although the Act does not apply to our employee information, we have elected to follow privacy "best practices" in this area. If you apply to the Company for a job, we need to consider your personal information, as part of our review process. We normally retain information from candidates after a decision has been made, unless you ask us not to retain the information. If we offer you a job, which you accept, the information will be retained with our privacy procedures for employee records.
The Company has firewalls and other internal encryption techniques to safeguard personal information stored on the Company's servers. A firewall is essentially an electronic boundary that prevents unauthorized access to certain files. We also regularly monitor internal systems for security breaches.