Verizon To Pay $7.4 Million To Settle Their FCC Investigation

Verizon - United States

Verizon Communication will pay $7.4 million in order to settle FCC investigation. According to FCC, the company did not tell its customers about their privacy rights and kept on using their personal information for the marketing. FCC further told that Verizon also continued this practice during the mid 2000s. According to the regularity authority, it was Verizon’s failure that it did not notify its around 2 million new customers of their privacy rights so that they may “opt out from having their personal information used.”

From now on the company’s customers will be receiving opt-out rights on each bill they receive for the next three years. According to the chief of the FCC Enforcement Bureau, it is the duty of all the telecom companies to notify their customer of their privacy rights. He further added that using the personal information of the customers for marketing purposes without notifying them cannot be accepted at any cost. According to FCC, in the start of 2006, the carrier did not tell some customers that how their personal information was being used for the marketing purposes. Generally telecom companies are not let to access to personal information of the customers. It is only allowed, According to FCC, when the customers are given the chance to opt out by the companies. This is something Verizon did not do.

A lot of customers did receive opt-out notices with their first bill, but around two million new customers did not receive such notice and the carrier used their information in order to sell its new services to them. FCC says, the problem was not discovered by the carrier until September 2012. In such a situation the FCC must be notified within five business days but FCC was not told until January 2013. It is also interesting to note that the $7.4 million is so far the biggest payment in the history of FCC, "for settling an investigation related solely to the privacy of telephone customers' personal information."


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