Lawmakers Revive Law to Protect Web Consumer Data

“We’re going to continue to drive this agenda forward so consumers know their privacy is at risk.”
On his first days as president, Trump has promised to cut regulations on many businesses. This resulted to his allies scraping bills created by Obama that restrict how broadband providers used web user’s data. However, there are reasons to believe that the lawmakers plan to reverse their decision.

Almost two dozen lawmakers from various state capitols have expressed their intention to help increase consumer privacy regulations. The proposals intend to limit the way the three biggest broadband providers, AT&T Inc., Verizon Communications Inc. and Comcast Corp., on how they can use data collected from their customers.

Reports say that such moves show that there are still many states that oppose the changes that are being brought about by the Trump administrations. Other instances that showed this opposition is when the Trump Administration decided to pull out from the international environmental protection agreement, the Paris Climate Accord.

Governors from large states such as Washington, New York, and California created their own coalition to battle climate change. California also expressed their willingness to fight against any effort coming from Trump that intends to lower the fuel-efficiency standards for automobiles.

According to sources, lawmakers from thirty-five states are also pushing for a law that forces broadband companies to match their internet speeds as to how they advertise them.

Internet providers have been known to sell data collected from consumers to third parties for marketing purposes. Unlike search engine providers like Google that use the data on their own to improve their search results for users. This is why SEO strategies have become famous over the past years.

“If the federal government lags, the states have to lead. And that’s what we’re doing,” said Democratic New York state senator Tim Kennedy. Kennedy proposed a bill which seeks to prevent internet providers from selling internet data from customers such as social media histories, web searches, or any other personal information to outside parties.

Due to a Republican-Dominated Senate, Kennedy’s first attempt to pass the bill became futile. However, he said that he will not stop until the bill fully becomes a law. According to him, “We’re going to continue to drive this agenda forward so consumers know their privacy is at risk.”. According to him, such decisions by the administration are made to protect the interests of large corporations, regardless the negative effects it has on the populace.

He added that if the bill becomes a law, broadband providers like Verizon would need consumer’s consent before selling information regarding the latter. The bill covers internet providers regulated by the Federal Communications Commission, web-based companies that collect data such as Facebook or Google, are not within the scope of the proposal.

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