Reporting security incidents

If you believe that sensitive government information or assets have been accessed without permission, you are required to report the incident to the Contract Security Program. Find out how, when and where to report security incidents.

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Security incidents

A security incident is an alert that a breach of security may be taking place or may have taken place. It is an act, event or omission that could result in the compromise of information, assets or services. This may include:

Organizations must establish procedures to ensure that suspected or confirmed security incidents are immediately identified, investigated and reported to the program.

How to report a security incident

Security incidents must be reported to the company security officer. The company security officer will conduct a preliminary inquiry, keep a written record and report incidents to the Contract Security Program.

Complete the security incident report for company security officers and alternate company security officers

The preliminary inquiry will answer the following questions:

Submit either the completed incident report or an email to the Investigations Division of the Contract Security Program at the following address: ssidsicdieenquetes/.isscisdiidinvestigations@tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca.

Do not submit protected and classified information with your report or by email. When submitting either your security incident report or email, clearly indicate in your message whether you must submit sensitive information as part of the incident reporting. The investigator assigned to the file will then contact you to make the necessary arrangements to obtain these documents.

If you suspect a criminal act has been committed, contact your local police service.

Security breaches

A security incident that leads to a confirmed compromise of information and assets is considered a security breach.

A breach is an act, event or omission that results in the compromise of sensitive information or assets. This means that there has been unauthorized access, disclosure, destruction, removal, modification, use or interruption of protected and classified information and assets.

How to report a security breach

In the event of a security breach, the company security officer must take the following steps, document them in a security incident report and forward it to the program:

  1. report breaches immediately to the program. Complete the security incident report for company security officers and alternate company security officers
  2. complete an investigation of the incident by determining the cause of the incident
  3. take corrective measures and implement controls to prevent or minimize the possibility of future similar incidents

Security contacts

A security contact happens when the representative of a group communicates with you to access national security information for which they do not have a need-to-know.

A security contact can occur during official or social circumstances, in or outside of Canada.

A security contact may come from:

These groups or individuals use considerable resources to obtain access to national and defence information, weapons or other military assets. Their efforts could involve targeting a person or their family and friends.

Awareness is vital: If you have regular contact with representatives of foreign or other groups in or outside of Canada, then you are required to report this to your company security officer or alternate company security officer.

Why you may be targeted

Employees of organizations registered with the program could hold information that is highly sought after by foreign representatives. Information collected by these people and groups could be a threat to you, your organization and our national security.

You must report a suspicious contact so it can be assessed to:

When to report a contact

Your organization must report suspicious contacts as soon as they happen to allow prompt assessment and appropriate action.

Consider the following questions:

If the answer to any of the above questions is yes, then you should immediately report the suspicious contact to:

Third party reporting

Third party reporting is a vital assistance to the federal government in identifying inappropriate contacts.

The company security officer must ensure that incidents of this nature are reported to the program. They may also need to contact other parties, depending on the severity of the concern. The program treats third party reports in the strictest confidence.

How to report a security breach or security contact

If you suspect a security breach or security contact, you must: contact the Contract Security Program.

You may also need to contact the following authorities to report:

How the program investigates a security breach

The program conducts administrative investigations into security breaches.

Some examples of security breaches include:

The program will investigate security violations of protected and classified information and assets, such as:

Our investigator will:

Role of the company security officer

If the company security officer believes a security incident has taken place, they are responsible for the following:

The company security officer can prevent security incidents by creating awareness in the organization. How? By:

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