Staying true to his promise during last year’s campaign period, U.S. President Donald Trump signed a bill to change the current rules on data and privacy protection for the customers of internet service providers (ISPs). The rules, which were first introduced last year by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), served as a stopping force against ISPs to sell personal data from customers that can be used by advertisers to create a profile.
FCC revealed a set of rules last year that will protect the private data of ISP customers, including browsing and download history. This kind of information is ideal for advertisers to know the pulse of the general public, but the FCC deemed such action of using private data as a violation to consumer’s rights. The new FCC Chairman Ajit Pai believes that the Federal Trade Commission should build a framework of consumers’ privacy rules.
Lobbyist of internal service providers claims that the FCC privacy rules last year are putting at a disadvantage, whereas other huge companies like Google and Facebook have the freedom to do any actions with the users’ private data. Although, several U.S.-based ISPs like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon stated that they are not selling any form of online data from customers, and has no intention of doing so in the future.
To note, the resolution on the FCC restrictions already passed the Congress and Senate deliberations, but the executive branch would still have the final say regarding the implementation of the rules.The latest bill signed by President Trump would also stop the FCC from doing similar preventive actions against ISPs in the future.
Still, the president’s move to nullify the FCC privacy rules are met with negative reaction, specifically from the Electronic Frontier Foundation. The consumers right group argued that the restrictions would have also acted as a safeguard to prevent rampant hacking activities online.