Wednesday, March 1, 2017

FCC Votes to Halt Internet Privacy Rule

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Wednesday voted 2-1 along Party lines to prevent a new Internet Privacy Rule from taking effect.

The Rule would have required Internet Service Providers (ISP) to take more stringent steps to protect consumers' Personal Data.

The Provision was part of a larger set of Broadband Privacy Rules passed by the FCC in October under the Obama Administration and set to go into effect on Thursday.

The measure called for Broadband providers to take "reasonable" measures to ensure the Security of Customer data. But critics said that it would have set up different requirements than privacy rules issued by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and acting FTC Chairwoman Maureen Ohlhausen issued a joint statement arguing that privacy should be returned to the FTC's jurisdiction.

"We still believe that jurisdiction over broadband providers' privacy and data security practices should be returned to the FTC, the nation's expert agency with respect to these important subjects," they said in the statement. "All actors in the online space should be subject to the same rules, enforced by the same agency."

The temporary stay will be in place until the FCC votes on a reconsideration of the Rules.

FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, the sole Democrat on the Commission, blasted the vote on Wednesday, issuing a dissent.

"If a provider simply decides not to adequately protect a customer's information and does not notify them when a breach inevitably occurs, there will be no recompense as a matter of course," Clyburn wrote.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker
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