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Ajit Pai: Carrier sales of phone-location data is illegal, FCC plans punishment


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The New York Times
SOURCE: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2020/01/ajit-pai-carrier-sales-of-phone-location-data-is-illegal-fcc-plans-punishment/
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Summary

it has concluded that one or more wireless carriers apparently violated federal law," Pai wrote in a letter today to Democratic members of Congress who asked for an update on the probe."I am committed to ensuring that all entities subject to our jurisdiction comply with the Communications Act and the FCC's rules, including those that protect consumers' sensitive information, such as real-time location data," Pai's letter continued. Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint subsequently pledged to stop selling their mobile customers' location information to third-party data brokers.Further ReadingT-Mobile, Sprint, and AT&T still selling your location data, report saysHowever, an investigation by Motherboard in January 2019 found that "T-Mobile, Sprint, and AT&T are [still] selling access to their customers' location data and that data is ending up in the hands of bounty hunters and others not authorized to possess it, letting them track most phones in the country."The carriers made further promises to stop selling the data and later confirmed to the FCC that they had phased out the data-selling programs.Pai's letter today did not say exactly which federal law the carriers broke, but Section 222 of the Communications Act says that carriers may not use or disclose location information "without the express prior authorization of the customer." Carriers have also been accused of violating rules on the usage of 911 location data.You must login or create an account to comment.Join the Ars Orbital Transmission mailing list to get weekly updates delivered to your inbox.

As said here by Jon Brodkin