Senate Votes to Allow ISPs to Legally Sell Your Browsing History Without Permission

- March 23, 2017

In what the LA Times called a “norrow vote,” the Senate yesterday overturned privacy rules passed last year by the FCC. The rules are intended to keep individual user’s browsing history and usage data private by requiring that they obtain legal permission first.

After a 50-48 vote, the Senate will pass the vote to the House, and then to President Trump.

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., has been quoted by USA Today calling the FCC rules passed last year have been called “heavy-handed,” and unfair because they are more strict than those applied to online content providers and other Internet industries that amounted to “bad regulation.”

Prior to the Senate vote, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-CT, called the resolution a “direct attack on consumer rights, on privacy, on rules that afford basic protection against intrusive and illegal interference with consumers’ use of social media sites and websites…”

The Verge notes that the reversal is “particularly damaging” because it doesn’t merely undo the former rules, but also makes it more difficult for the FCC to pass similar protections in the future.