What the death of broadband privacy rules means

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Back in October 2016, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) imposed privacy rules that required Internet and mobile phone corporations to get consent from their customers before sharing personal data with advertisers.

In a 215-205 vote yesterday, March 28, members of the United States House of Representatives chose to pass a Congressional Review Act (CRA) that overturns an internet privacy regulation yet to take effect.

"This is, I think, a political disagreement as to what alphabet soup agency should be making the rules", said Tamashasky.

Colorado Representative, Jared Polis also objected to the bill.

The NCTA, the Internet & Television Association, said the vote "marks an important step toward restoring consumer privacy protections that apply consistently to all Internet companies".

Now, your internet service provider (like Comcast and AT&T) have the wonderful ability to sell the data they collect on their users to whichever advertiser or corporation that hopes to obtain it for whatever goal they want.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy welcomed the passage of the bill, saying it will "protect both consumers and the future of internet innovation by overturning this flawed FCC rule".

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There are limited ways consumers can protect themselves from having their Web histories collected and sold by their Internet service providers, who are about to get government-sanctioned free reign over their Internet traffic.

But the FCC's previous chairman, Democrat Tom Wheeler, oversaw the rules' crafting to strengthen consumer online data protections. It is expected to be signed by President Trump. And the big Internet service providers like AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon are thrilled. The counterargument to this has been that when it comes to websites such as Facebook and Google, users have a choice about whether to use them or not - with ISPs, this is not necessarily the case. Widely praised by privacy and consumer advocates when it was finalized past year, the rule hadn't yet taken effect.

The ISPs had argued that the Federal Trade Commission already regulates privacy.

"They can continue treating your information like they always have".

Democrats said Republicans put profits over the privacy concerns of Americans.

Politicotweeted overnight that the House voted "nearly unanimously to revoke broadband privacy rules".

All told, 265 Republican Representatives and Senators voted "yes" to hand ISP's this new tool for privacy invasion.