House Republicans voted to overturn privacy rules Tuesday that were introduced by the Obama administration to prevent telecommunications and cable companies from sharing customers’ personal data without their consent or knowledge.
That data may include your web browsing history, Social Security number, information about your health and other sensitive details.
The Senate passed its version of the same bill last week. If signed into law by President Donald Trump, internet service providers will be able to collect and sell this sensitive information.
Unsurprisingly, many of the lawmakers who voted in favor of the bill have received campaign donations from companies or employees of companies that stand to benefit from it ― corporations such as AT&T, Verizon and Comcast. (Verizon owns AOL, which is The Huffington Post’s parent company.)
The Verge has a breakdown of exactly how much each member of Congress who voted to reverse the privacy rule received in donations from major players in the telecom industry in their last election cycle.
Some lawmakers, such as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), received upward of six figures from the telecommunications industry. Others, however, received relatively paltry sums — in some cases, under $1,000. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), who introduced the bill, received $27,955.
Flake and other Republican supporters of rolling back the Federal Communications Commission regulation, set to go into effect later this year, argue that doing so puts internet privacy back in the hands of providers and that ending the regulation will increase consumer choice.
Opponents, however, say the bill is bad for consumers.