Representative Ann-Margaret Ferrante (D-Gloucester) has co-sponsored legislation filed by House Speaker Pro Tempore Patricia Haddad (D-Somerset) that would prevent internet service providers (ISPs) from selling their Massachusetts users’ personal data to third parties without their consent.
The legislation in the Massachusetts House of Representatives is in response to legislation President Donald Trump signed into law which repealed federal rules that would have prevented ISPs from selling records of their customers’ internet use, including what websites they visit.
“I’m pleased to announce my support of this comprehensive legislation that House leadership has been working on since the repeal of the federal privacy rules,” said Ferrante. “People shouldn’t have to worry about their internet history being packaged up and sold off to the highest bidder without their consent. With this legislation, we are giving the residents of Massachusetts the ability to protect their privacy.”
Haddad’s legislation would prevent ISPs from selling or permitting commercial access to any data collected from Massachusetts consumers, including internet history and location data, without their clear and express consent. Additionally, any consent given by the customer would be able to be withdrawn at any time.
“This intrusion into the personal lives of Massachusetts residents is not simply a violation of privacy, but is also bad policy,” continued Ferrante. “It would open the doors to serious exploitation of an individual’s internet history and all that entails – communications, medical information, and more. That is unacceptable and is the reason we are taking these steps to help the people of the Commonwealth keep their internet information private and secure.”
Representative Ferrante can be reached by calling her office at 617-722-2012 or by email at Ann-Margaret.Ferrante@MAhouse.gov. Find her on Facebook @RepAMF and Twitter @Rep_AMF.