What ISPs Take Your Privacy Seriously
The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) updated its privacy rules a few years back when millions of US citizens voiced their concerns about ISPs (Internet service providers) spying on them. The updated rules prevented ISPs including Comcast, Verizon and AT&T from selling or spying on your data, and that people’s consent is needed before their data is used.
However, that aspect of FCC’s privacy rules is now in jeopardy. The House of Representatives recently voted to nullify the rule that protects our online privacy (215-2015) by using the Congressional Review Act. That means that AT&T, Comcast or Verizon can continue sharing and tracking your app activity and web browsing habits without permission.
The internet has exploded over the decision, and that includes Democratic lawmakers, networking companies and small ISPs. According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, many of them are of the opinion that rules need to stay intact to protect consumers’ privacy online. 17 ISPs even wrote to the Congress voicing their concerns. Here’s an excerpt from the letter signed by small ISPs.
Perhaps if there were a healthy, free, transparent, and competitive market for Internet services in this country, consumers could choose not to use those companies’ products. But small ISPs like ours face many structural obstacles, and many Americans have very limited choices: a monopoly or duopoly on the wireline side, and a highly consolidated cellular market dominated by the same wireline firms.
Under those circumstances, the FCC’s Broadband Privacy Rules are the only way that most Americans will retain the free market choice to browse the Web without being surveilled by the company they pay for an Internet connection.
Critics argue that the rules subject ISPs to stricter privacy regulations than web-based companies like Facebook and Google are subjected to. But the organization has limited authority to regulate web-based companies. The house vote, if it materializes, is a welcome for ISP monopolies, but at the cost of consumer privacy.
All Isn’t Lost
Surefire Privacy Protection
You can keep your web activity hidden from your internet service provider by using a virtual private network, or VPN for acronym. SlickVPN safeguards your privacy by bringing in a private, remote server. Your internet connection is encrypted, which makes all your information unreadable by ISPs.
Unlike your internet service provider, SlickVPN doesn’t keep tabs on your session data. There’s a zero-logging policy maintained, so there’s no record of your web activity while you’re using the service.
While the above-mentioned ISPs may be doing a decent job at protecting your privacy, using a virtual private network is the only effective way to safeguard it completely.