A child support login for all Canada’s jurisdictions has become the biggest worry for many, with the government now warning that it is now “the biggest risk to Canada.”
The system requires children to have a court-appointed guardian when they enter a child support order, which often means they do not have access to a lawyer.
The child support website also requires parents to register their child support payments to the federal government’s online system.
But the federal child support agency, the Child Support Payment System Agency (CSPA), says the system can be circumvented if it is used improperly.
“We are very concerned with the vulnerability of the CSPA to cyberattacks, as it has been in the past,” CSPA spokeswoman Katie Stibbe said in an email to CBC News.
CSPA’s Stibber told CBC News that the agency’s website is designed to prevent unauthorized access to the system.
“The CSPA website is a password protected system, so the password will be used to ensure that the CSPAs website is secure, and that there is no unauthorized access or access to confidential information,” she said.
Stibbe added that the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) and other groups have raised concerns about the vulnerability.
She said the agency has also taken steps to address the issues raised by CTF and others.
Stibber said the CSSA’s website has been updated to make it more secure.
When parents are notified of the problems, the system automatically locks and the system password is reset.
If the system is used to access confidential information, the child support payment will be sent to the court’s central repository, she said, adding that there will also be a mechanism for parents to send child support notices to their local tax office, and for the agency to send payment notices to the address provided in their child’s file.
While the child supports agency is in the process of updating the system, Stibb said she can’t say when that will be done.
Canada’s child supports system was designed to be as secure as possible, but is now vulnerable to cyber attacks and there are serious questions as to how much more secure the system will be, Stribb said.
CBC News requested the federal agency’s response to the CSPSA’s concerns.
By email, CSPA spokesperson Katie Stobbe said the government is aware of concerns raised by the CSF.
However, Stobb said, the agency takes seriously its obligation to ensure the integrity of its child support systems.
There is also a mandatory reporting requirement for the CSPPAs website, and a separate requirement for court-ordered child support orders, she added.
Child support payments can be sent via the CSPM website, or they can be paid to the government’s tax office via cheque.
The CSPM also has a mobile app that allows users to pay child support online and mail it to a local tax-payable address, Stubbe said.
If a child supports order is made to a taxpayer, the order is sent to that taxpayer’s local court-office, where the tax office will issue a court order on the order, Stubs said.