Metadata, deleted and hidden information

Link to older case law related to Metadata, deleted and hidden information

Desgagne v. Yuen et al, 2006 BCSC 955 (CanLII)

  • June 21, 2006

Date: 2006-06-21 Docket: M040544. Myers J. | Link
In a motion the Defendants seek production of the the hard drive from the plaintiff's home computer for analysis by an expert. The court addresses the question whether metadata (sic) is a document.

Frangione v. Vandongen et al., 2010 ONSC 2823 (CanLII)

  • May 18, 2010

Date: 2010-05-18 Docket: 04-CV-2573CM  Master Lou Ann M. Pope. | Link
In this motor vehicle personal injury case, the defendant sought information from the plaintiff's computer about the amount of time actually spent on the computer. The defendant asked for a forensic copy of the hard disk so that its forensic expert could look for the system metadata cataloguing usage activity. The discussion starts at para 64.

Hummingbird v. Mustafa, 2007 CanLII 39610 (ON S.C.)

  • September 19, 2007

Date: 2007-09-19 Docket: 06-CV-304092PD1 Master Sproat | Link
"While there was no evidence as to the precise nature of metadata, it seems to me that metadata is "data and information in electronic form". Hummingbird has determined that certain of the documents located on the hard drive and certain of the metadata was relevant. In my view, once Hummingbird has determined that a particular document is relevant, the metadata in relation to such document should be produced. In my view, the metadata is akin to a "time/;date stamp" affixed to a letter or the "fax header" that indicated the time/date of faxing and receipt." (para 9)

Ireland v. Low, 2006 BCSC 393 (CanLII)

  • March 10, 2006

Date: 2006-03-10 Docket: S0014950. B.M. Joyce, J. | Link
Nice description of "deleted" information: "[7] I am also satisfied that the mere "deletion" of a computer file by the computer user does not remove the electronic data. It removes the operating system pathway that allows retrieval of the document by the user employing the computer's operating system. Eventually the data may be "overwritten" as new data is stored in the sectors that stored the original data but until this is done a person with the necessary skill can retrieve the "deleted" data using software programs for that purpose."

Veltheer v Prachnau et al, 2007 BCSC 511 (CanLII)

  • March 15, 2007

Date: 2007-03-15 Docket: M042197. J. Sinclair Prowse, J. | Link
Deleted material may still need to be produced if it is relevant. "With respect to the documents that are filed in the electronic devices and/or the computers, the Plaintiff may find the material of the Defendant to be very helpful, as it is explained as to what in fact is in the possession or under the control of a person having such electronic devices or computers. That is, documents are still possessed and in control even though they may have been deleted, or they thought they had been deleted, from the hard drive." (para 10) (Italics P.D.)

Wenzel Downhole Tools Ltd. v. National-Oilwell Canada Ltd., 2011 FC 1323

  • November 29, 2011

Date: 2011-11-29 Snider J.  | Link
A patent dispute about a bearing assembly intended for use in the drilling of oil and gas wells. Plaintiff applied for a patent in October 1990. Defendant proves that their use of the bearing assembly in dispute pre-dated the patent, based on metadata associated with a CAD file stating that the drawing was created in September 1989 (para 111).