Individual US States Could Revive Internet Privacy Rules

Individual U.S. states may revive broadband Internet privacy rules recently repealed by the Congress and signed by President Trump, with latest reports indicating that legislative bodies in more than 20 state capitols are currently debating the idea of reinstating the protections that were officially killed in April before ever coming into force. Democratic New York Senator Tim Kennedy recently introduced a bill that would prevent Internet providers in the country from selling browsing histories of their customers and related data under all circumstances, thus looking to oppose the essence of the controversial bill that repealed privacy rules adopted under the former Obama administration by the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

Similar moves are being made in close to two dozen other state capitols, with Internet privacy being just one of several issues that state lawmakers are looking to address and consequently directly oppose the current federal government. President Trump's polarizing decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement also prompted the likes of California, New York, and Washington to introduce their own environment-friendly initiatives aimed at combating global warming on their own. No less than 35 states are currently lobbying to be allowed individual rights to force broadband and wireless service providers into ensuring that their Internet speeds are on par to those provided for online advertising, recent reports indicate. While many of these initiatives are being introduced by Democratic representatives in Republican-dominated legislative bodies, numerous members of the opposition party are claiming that they aren't planning on dropping the issue in an effort to draw the attention of the general public to the matter.

The controversial repeal of broadband Internet privacy rules polarized the American political scene, with proponents of the move arguing that the Obama-era regulations were never in force and would prevent ISPs from collecting and selling user data when Internet giants like Facebook and Google have always been free to do that, thus creating an unfair market advantage. A number of Internet providers publicly stated that their customers have nothing to worry about, adding that even portions of collected data that are sold are completely depersonalized and don't contain identifiable information. Opponents of the initiative continue to argue that ISPs shouldn't be regulated in the same manner that online platforms are, especially those that offer their services free of charge. An update on the situation is expected to follow later this year.

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About the Author

Dominik Bosnjak

Head Editor
Dominik started at AndroidHeadlines in 2016 and is the Head Editor of the site today. He’s approaching his first full decade in the media industry, with his background being primarily in technology, gaming, and entertainment. These days, his focus is more on the political side of the tech game, as well as data privacy issues, with him looking at both of those through the prism of Android. Contact him at [email protected]