Tag Archives: Verizon

U.S. investigating AT&T and Verizon over wireless collusion claim

by Cecilia Kang, New York Times

locked cell phone

The investigation was opened about five months ago after at least one device maker and one wireless carrier filed formal complaints with the Justice Department, two of the people said. The device maker was Apple, one of them said. Read More ›

Cable And Telecom Companies Just Lost A Huge Court Battle On Net Neutrality

by Brian Fung, Washington Post

The court verdict puts to rest — for now — a key question: Whether the Internet represents a vital communications platform that deserves to be regulated with the same scrutiny as the common networks of the past, such as the telephone system. Read More ›

AB 2395: AT&T Wants To Disconnect Millions Of California Landlines

Woman on corded phone at home

According to the Assembly Utilities and Commerce Committee, about 16.5 million traditional copper land lines remain in service in California. AT&T’s bill would create a pathway for phone companies to abandon residential land lines in 2020, even in areas where an adequate alternative phone option does not exist. While many consumers now have cell phones or IP phones as well as land lines, about 2.3 million Californians live in a home that only has a landline. AB 2395 will eliminate both customer choice and the current requirements for Carriers of Last Resort that ensure all Californians have access to reliable essential phone services. Read More ›

CFC Applauds FCC Move To Protect Broadband Privacy

“Today’s vote is a significant advance for privacy protection. Consumers should decide whether their online activities and other personal data are shared with third-party strangers,” CFC Executive Director Richard Holober said. “It is essential that any final FCC rule prohibits broadband carriers from charging extra for privacy. Privacy is a right that should not be available only to the wealthy.” Read More ›

Proposed FCC Rules Would Limit How Internet Service Providers Can Use Your Data

by Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times

walking smartphone aps illustration

“Simply by using the Internet, you have no choice but to share large amounts of personal information with your broadband provider,” FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said in an article on the Huffington Post. “You have a right to know what information is being collected about you and how that information is being used. … If you have a mobile device, your provider can track your physical location throughout the day in real time. … The bottom line is that it’s your data,” he said. “How it’s used and shared should be your choice.” Read More ›

FCC Cracks Down On Verizon Wireless For Using ‘Supercookies’

by Andrea Peterson, Washington Post

The practice came to the public’s attention in late 2014, when it received criticism from privacy advocates who called the code a “supercookie” because it was almost impossible for users to avoid. … Last January, researcher Jonathan Mayer revealed evidence that others could hijack the supercookie for their own purposes: An online advertising company called Turn was using the codes to help follow people around online, he said. Turn used the supercookie to “respawn” its traditional cookies — even if users took steps to protect their privacy by removing the cookies. Read More ›

CFC, Other Groups Urge FCC To Protect Personal Privacy From Internet, Telecom and Cable Companies

A young mixed race woman types on her laptop computer while she is being watched by a giant eye on the laptop screen.

The letter to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler rejects the looser regulatory framework advocated by broadband Internet service providers (ISPs). The ISPs’ approach relies in large part on existing Federal Trade Commission rules that have done little to restrain ISPs’ aggressive mining of their subscribers’ data for marketing purposes, the consumer and privacy groups warn. ISPs such as Verizon, Comcast and Cox can exploit the personal data they amass on Web surfers, cable and streaming television viewers and smartphone users – not just marketing to their own customers but also selling the information to third parties. Read More ›

Verizon And Sprint To Pay $158 Million To Settle Mobile Cramming Case

by Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times

can of cram aka spam

Verizon Communications Inc. and Sprint Corp. have agreed to pay a combined $158 million, including at least $120 million in consumer refunds, to settle federal and state investigations into allegations mobile customers were improperly billed for premium text messages. The so-called cramming of unauthorized charges onto customers’ bills involved one-time fees of 99 cents to $4.99 for third-party text-messaging services and monthly subscriptions to those messages that cost $9.99 to $14 a month, federal regulators said Tuesday. Customers complained that they never authorized the charges, according to the Federal Communications Commission. Read More ›

Verizon’s Super-Cookies Are A Super Privacy Violation

by David Lazarus, Los Angeles Times

Verizon is informing customers that they can opt out of having their personal information shared by visiting the company’s MyVerizon website. But here’s something Verizon is neglecting to mention. Any visit to MyVerizon will result in — you guessed it — a cookie being generated for your computer or wireless device that will automatically enroll you in what Verizon calls its Relevant Mobile Advertising program, which oversees all online tracking. Think about that: Verizon will violate your privacy even as you go through the steps the company has set up to protect your privacy. Read More ›

Lured by Verizon into Giving up Cellphone Privacy

by David Lazarus, Los Angeles Times

Similar tactics are employed by practically all other telecom, financial and Internet companies. But Verizon Wireless has been unusually clumsy in its efforts to coax customers into abandoning their privacy. … It’s using the prospect of money-saving deals as an enticement for people agreeing to let the company peer over their shoulder. [One analyst] said programs such as Verizon Smart Rewards represent “a location gold mine” that can be used by wireless carriers for “big data analytics and advertising.” The wireless industry could be looking at nearly $2 billion in extra revenue by 2019. Read More ›

Verizon accused of forcing Internet phones on land-line users

by Marc Lifsher, Los Angeles Times

Two years ago, California’s two giant telecom companies and their Silicon Valley allies won passage of a law freeing phone-over-the-Internet calls from government regulation. But this deregulation was never supposed to affect phone customers who didn’t want to give up their traditional copper-wire land lines. It also expressly banned phone providers from forcing people to give up their copper-line phones. Now, complaints are mounting that at least one telecom, Verizon Communications Inc., is doing just that. Read More ›