The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) passed new rules to protect consumers’ online privacy in the U.S. last October. The new rules were to ensure that ISPs (Internet Service Providers) could not use or sell their customer’s Internet browsing history, mobile location data, and other personal information that passes through your telecom or Internet provider.
Some large telecom and cable providers, including AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon, have been pushing to be able to use or sell their customer’s personal information for some time. Even with encrypted browsing or using private mode with a browser, your ISP still has the ability to track everywhere you go on the Internet.
These new rules would require these service providers to obtain their customers’ explicit permission to use this data before they could share it with third parties.
Unfortunately, this protection for consumers did not last long. Congress voted in favor of the big telecom providers and ISPs to prevent the consumer protections from taking effect. Then in March of this year, President Trump approved Congress’s repeal of these consumer protections by the FCC.
Fung, B., & Timberg, C. (2016, October 27). The FCC just passed sweeping new rules to protect your online privacy. Retrieved August 10, 2017, from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2016/10/27/the-fcc-just-passed-sweeping-new-rules-to-protect-your-online-privacy/?tid=a_inl&utm_term=.6625ed72f166
Fung, B. (2017, March 29). What to expect now that Internet providers can collect and sell your Web browser history. Retrieved August 10, 2017, from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2017/03/29/what-to-expect-now-that-internet-providers-can-collect-and-sell-your-web-browser-history/