What the Death of Broadband Privacy Rules Means

In the March 29 Miami Herald article "Congress cancels FCC's landmark Internet privacy protections", I read that Congress will be "letting Internet providers collect and sell their customers' web-browsing history, location information, health data, and other personal details".

The regulations, introduced at the end of Barack Obama's second presidential term, attracted strong criticism from Republicans, who argued that they created an unfair playing field in the digital advertising market.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said broadband carriers should be regulated due to their ability to track every action Americans take online.

During floor debate, she said "Republicans want this (private) information to be sold without your permission".

Your personal information will soon be even more exposed on the internet because Congress just passed a new law eliminating privacy rules for internet providers.

Plus, it's easier for consumers to choose whether they want to use Facebook or an alternative service; but when it comes to choosing ISPs, 78% of Americans don't have a choice between providers, according to a recent FCC report - not to mention there's a high cost associated with switching providers.

The US Congress has approved a Bill to revoke the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) broadband privacy regulations, which the Opposition fears, will strip consumers of critical privacy protections for their online data. In addition to repealing the previously-enacted rules, the resolution prohibits the FCC from passing any new privacy restrictions to protect users. GOP lawmakers said they care about consumer privacy every bit as much as Democrats did but that it would have stifled innovation and picked winners and losers among internet companies.

Pai added that the FCC would work with the Federal Trade Commission to ensure consumers' online privacy would be protected through a "consistent and comprehensive framework". Broadband providers don't now fall under FTC jurisdiction, and advocates say it has historically been a weaker agency than the FCC. "The public backlash following the party-line vote in the Senate clearly had an impact, as 15 Republicans broke ranks to vote against the measure", said Evan Greer, campaign director for Net freedom group Fight for the Future.

The American Civil Liberties Union urged Trump to veto the resolution. Therefore, the finalization of the bill is up to the hands of President Donald Trump. "It does provide an opportunity for President Trump, however". The repeal bill frees ISPs from having to protect customers' data from hackers and thieves. Sen. But with the regulations made invalid, internet service providers can sell the information-unless you opt out.

Telecom companies know a lot about what people do online because they are the gatekeepers through which people connect to the Internet.