Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler has released new draft rules designed to protect internet users from their internet service providers. The Broadband Consumer Privacy Proposal will require internet service providers to obtain express permission from their users before spying on all of your internet traffic and selling private information such as your web browsing history. The new FCC rules fall short of banning these types of pay-for-privacy schemes.
Wheeler explained why you need to be wary of your internet service provider:
“Your ISP handles all of your network traffic. That means it has a broad view of all of your unencrypted online activity—when you are online, the websites you visit, and the apps you use. If you have a mobile device, your provider can track your physical location throughout the day in real time. Even when data is encrypted, your broadband provider can piece together significant amounts of information about you—including private information such as a chronic medical condition or financial problems—based on your online activity.”