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ISPs can sell your browsing history without your consent, Senate rules

Arizona Senator Jeff Flake introduced the repeal of the FCC regulations. (Source: Washington Times)
Arizona Senator Jeff Flake introduced the repeal of the FCC regulations. (Source: Washington Times)
FCC regulations that would disallow ISPs to share or sell users' internet browsing history and other private information without their explicit consent have been shot down in the US Senate.

In October of 2016, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved rules that would require Internet service providers (ISPs) to obtain customer consent before sharing or selling their browsing histories to advertisers in the USA (outside the country, this already happens, according to Ad Age). However, the Senate has just exercised its right under the "Congressional Review Act" to not only nullify the previously passed motion, but to prevent the FCC from proposing such restrictions again.

Is it worth pointing out that the votes from the Senate were entirely along party lines, as Ars Technica notes. With the new Republican Majority in the Senate, the FCC regulations were defeated 50-48. There are just two (faint) chances for the privacy-protecting measure to be saved: the House of Representatives would have to vote to reject the elimination of the FCC measure, or President Trump could exercise his power of veto. Both of these outcomes are unlikely; it looks like ISPs will soon be able to sell their customers' private information and browsing histories to advertisers without any consent or notification.

During the debate that occurred before the vote, Democratic lawmakers voiced concern about the comprehensive profiles of customers that Internet providers have access to. Some Republican lawmakers argued that the FCC regulations constituted government overreach and were anti-consumer.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2017 03 > ISPs can sell your browsing history without your consent, Senate rules
Douglas Black, 2017-03-27 (Update: 2017-03-27)
Douglas Black
Douglas Black - News Editor
Douglas Black is a technology analyst, teacher, writer, and DJ. He is also Managing Editor of UltrabookReview.