White House Set to Repeal Obama Privacy Laws

White House Set to Repeal Obama Privacy Laws

The White House has confirmed it will support a new Congressional move to roll back privacy laws drawn up under the Obama administration, effectively allowing ISPs to sell citizens' browsing history to the highest bidder.

The new FCC-led rules effectively subjected broadband providers to the same oversight as telephone firms, meaning they required ISPs to ask customers for an “opt-in” to access app usage and web browsing data, and gave punters an opt-out of agreements to share e-mail addresses, service tier information and the like.

Ironically, as reported by Brian Krebs, those changes haven’t even had a chance to come into effect yet, so little will change on the surface for US consumers, aside from the realization from this whole fiasco that they probably have far too few privacy protections by default.

This week the House of Representatives followed the Senate in voting to nullify FCC rules relating to "Protecting the Privacy of Customers of Broadband and Other Telecommunications Services.”

Now the Trump administration has signaled it “strongly supports” the move, meaning the President will sign the bill into law.

It’s a multi-billion dollar win for lobbysist, such as the Data and Marketing Association (DMA).

“The position taken by the DMA was simple: these laws were an overreach of the jurisdiction of the FCC. They would greatly undermine businesses that rely on ISP data as a source of their overall big data initiatives and further complicate the landscape given the opt-out nature of CAN-SPAM,” argued Len Shneyder, VP of industry relations at SendGrid.

“Although the intention to protect Americans’ privacy was a good one, the fact is that more security regulations, protocols and standards will do more to protect consumer privacy than regulating new standards for opt-in.”

The move is in stark contrast to the situation in Europe, where the GDPR looks to impose strict new privacy laws on any firm processing the data of European citizens.

Source: Information Security Magazine