Trump signs bill repealing US internet privacy rules

President Donald Trump signed a resolution on Monday that officially repeals Obama-era broadband privacy rules.

Trump’s signature comes a few days after both houses of Congress narrowly voted to stop the rules, which were adopted last year but had not yet taken effect. The rules would have required broadband and wireless companies to get your permission before sharing sensitive information about you, such as the websites you visit, the apps you use or even your location.

The rules the FCC adopted were the strictest set of regulations that had ever been imposed to protect consumer online privacy. Even though the rules only included broadband and wireless providers, and excluded internet companies like Google and Facebook, proponents saw it as a first step in giving consumers more control of their personal data online.

Supporters of the rules argue that without the regulations, broadband providers will be able to sell information about where you’ve been online, what you’re buying, the apps you’re using and where you’re located to marketers and other third parties, like insurance companies.

Meanwhile, internet service providers said the regulations were too strict and unfairly single out broadband providers, because they require broadband companies to adhere to a more stringent privacy requirement than internet companies must follow.

In repealing the rules, Republicans used the Congressional Review Act , a tool that enables lawmakers to expedite bills to reverse recent regulations. The Act also prohibits the Federal Communications Commission from adopting similar rules in the future.

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