ISPs say your Web browsing and app usage history isn’t “sensitive”

ISPs say your Web browsing and app usage history isn’t “sensitive”

By | March 20th, 2017
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ISP lobby groups make case against the FCC’s broadband privacy rules.


ISPs that want the federal government to eliminate broadband privacy rules say that your Web browsing and app usage data should not be classified as “sensitive” information.

“Web browsing and app usage history are not ‘sensitive information,'” CTIA said in a filing with the Federal Communications Commission yesterday. CTIA is the main lobbyist group representing mobile broadband providers such as AT&T, Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile USA, and Sprint.

“To justify diverging from the FTC’s framework and defining Web browsing history as ‘sensitive,’ the commission and the both cherry-picked evidence in an attempt to show that ISPs have unique and comprehensive access to consumers’ online information,” CTIA wrote.

The ISPs’ common carrier classification could be changed by the FCC or Congress, but even then the FTC might not be able to regulate ISPs such as AT&T and other CTIA members because they would still be common carriers via their mobile voice services.

Nisheeth Bhakuni