Is it legal to record calls?

Is it legal to record calls in Canada?

In Canada, the legality of recording phone calls and conversations is governed by both federal and provincial laws, with the key factor being consent.

According to the Criminal Code of Canada, it is legal to record a private conversation as long as one of the parties involved consents to the recording. This is known as the “one-party consent” rule. However, this rule only applies to conversations that occur in circumstances where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy, and the person recording the conversation must be a participant in it. If a third party wants to record the conversation, all parties involved must consent to the recording​​.


Consent is implied after warning

The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) also plays a role, particularly in the context of businesses recording customer calls. Businesses must inform customers that they are recording the call, state the purpose of the recording, and ask for consent. If the customer continues the call knowing it’s being recorded, their consent is implied. However, in limited circumstances, such as calls made to collect a debt or investigate potential fraud, consent might not be required under PIPEDA​​​​.


Handling of personal information

It’s also important to consider the collection of personal information involved in these recordings. Organizations must handle recordings appropriately, from collection to disposal, to comply with privacy laws. They are required to obtain consent from customers and can only use the recordings for the purposes identified during the call​​​​.

Recording conversations without the consent of at least one participant can lead to legal consequences, including fines and imprisonment, depending on the severity of the violation. The penalties can be more severe if the recording is made for a criminal purpose, such as blackmail or extortion​​.


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For further information and detailed guidelines, you can refer to the following sources:


Call recording is included for free with Sonetel’s Premium and Business plans.
Please note that this information is gathered from public sources that may be incorrect or out of date. We cannot guarantee that this information is correct. To get a full picture of the legalities related to call recording we suggest that you get legal advice.