blind_html [Fwd: FCC Proposes Fines Over Data Protection]

  • From: Nimer <nimerjaber1@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: blind_html@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 26 Feb 2009 07:42:54 -0700



-------- Original Message --------
Subject:        FCC Proposes Fines Over Data Protection
Date:   Thu, 26 Feb 2009 10:47:19 -0000
From:   Ray T. Mahorney <coffee-craver@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Reply-To:       Blind-chit-chat@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To:     <Undisclosed-Recipient:;>



FEBRUARY 25, 2009

FCC Proposes Fines Over Data Protection

By AMY SCHATZ
Wall Street Journal

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123552946213366401.html <http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123552946213366401.html>

WASHINGTON -- Federal regulators slapped hundreds of small
telecommunications providers for not abiding by new rules designed to
protect consumer phone records, proposing more than $13 million in total
fines.

The Federal Communications Commission proposed $20,000 fines on more
than 650 small phone, pager and wireless providers Tuesday, accusing
them of not filing paperwork that certifies they have put protections in
place to protect customer phone data.

"I have long stressed the importance of protecting the sensitive
information that telecommunications carriers collect about their
customers," said Michael Copps, the FCC's interim chairman, in a
statement. "The broad nature of this enforcement action hopefully will
ensure substantial compliance with our [privacy] rules going forward as
the Commission continues to make consumer privacy protection a top
priority."

In April 2007, the FCC tightened privacy requirements on phone companies
in response to consumer complaints about data brokers selling phone
records they had obtained illegally through "pretexting," or getting
information under false circumstances.

The agency required telecom companies to increase security of phone
records, requiring customers to provide a password before receiving
account information over the phone or online. Phone companies are
required to notify customers when changes are made to their accounts or
if their information has been improperly accessed.

Companies are required to file annual certifications that they have
complied with those requirements.

The FCC said hundreds of small companies didn't provide the information
in 2008, although it noted it was the first year the agency had required
the paperwork. The agency warned that future noncompliance could face
"more severe penalties."

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