House sends bill to Trump blocking online privacy regulation

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Reversing the rule could, eventually, allow providers like Comcast, AT&T and Verizon to sell the browsing habits of their customers.

The FCC, then chaired by Democrat Tom Wheeler, passed those rules to require Internet Service Providers to ask customers' permission to collect, use and sell personal information.

President Donald Trump is expected to sign the order soon.

The rule was passed a year ago by the United States regulator with a majority of Democrats appointed by former president Barack Obama, a scenario that has been reversed with the election of President Donald Trump.

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said in a tweet the vote was "Terrible for American ppl, great for big biz".

Some privacy advocates said they will encourage the European Union to re-examine Privacy Shield, an agreement that allows companies to move customer data between the EU and the USA, in light of the congressional vote on the ISP privacy rules.

Republicans and industry groups have criticised that discrepancy, calling it unfair and confusing for consumers.

Violation of online privacy especially by the CIA and the NSA (National Security Agency) has been the subject of lingering debate in the U.S. as the two spy agencies have already been accused of using social networking sites to gather personal information of people worldwide.

Greer tells Newsweek that Fight for the Future plans to put up billboards with the names of every member of Congress who voted to repeal the FCC's broadband privacy rules. Republicans have suggested that ISPs should be regulated by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) instead of the FCC.

However, House Democrats accused Republicans of essentially throwing US consumers' privacy rights under the bus.

Just as the Senate vote to overturn privacy rules was close (50 votes to 48), so was yesterday's: 215 to 205.

Ajit Pai, the Trump-appointed Federal Communications Commission chairman, said existing privacy protections would remain in place. Republicans repeatedly discounted the privacy benefits generated by the rule. Over the last two months, they have voted to repeal more than a dozen Obama-era regulations in the name of curbing government overreach. "It does provide an opportunity for President Trump, however. They're just going to have to be more aggressive and assertive in telling the company what their preferences are", Luehr, an attorney who use to work for the FTC, told Fox 9.

"We simply want them to get our approval before they can sell this information to the highest bidder". It will not change or lessen existing consumer privacy protections. "There should not be one standard for internet service providers and another for other online companies".

That data may include your web browsing history, Social Security number, information about your health and other sensitive details. A VPN, or virtual private network, is one option to protect your online identity.

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