Lawmakers introduced legislation on Thursday to reinstate repealed internet privacy rules. The bill, proposes to establish privacy protections for customers of broadband internet access service and other telecommunications services.
The regulations passed in 2016 by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) required ISPs to get the consent of customers before using or monetizing their data.
Last month, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate passed Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolutions. The bill to repeal the rules was signed into law by President Trump on Monday, formally rescinding the FCC’s broadband privacy rules.
Without these strong rules in place, broadband providers can use, share, and sell Americans’ sensitive information without permission.
The bill was proposed by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), and co-sponsored by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Bernard Sanders (I-Vt.), Jeffrey A. Merkley (D-Ore.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), and Al Franken (D-Minn.).
“Thanks to Congressional Republicans, corporations, not consumers, are in control of sensitive information about Americans’ health, finances, and children. The Republican roll-back of strong broadband privacy rules means ISP no longer stands for Internet Service Provider, it stands for ‘Information Sold for Profit’,” said Senator Markey.
“This legislation will put the rules back on the books to protect consumers from abusive invasions of their privacy. Americans should not have to forgo their fundamental right to privacy just because their homes and phones are connected to the internet.”
Earlier in the week, Representative Jacky Rosen introduced her first bill, H.R. 1868, the Restoring America Privacy Act of 2017, which also aims to reverse the Congressional resolution signed by President Trump allowing internet providers to sell their customers’ personal information without their knowledge or consent.
“As someone who has first-hand experience as a computer programmer, I know that keeping privacy protections in place is essential for safeguarding vulnerable and sensitive data from hackers,” said Congresswoman Jacky Rosen.