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Kennedy bill seeks to ban sale of customer information by internet providers

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A New York State lawmaker has introduced legislation that seeks to block the sale of personal information by internet service providers. State Senator Tim Kennedy's bill was drafted and submitted one day after President Donald Trump took action that critics say makes potentially sensitive personal information available to the highest bidder.

On Monday, President Trump signed a Congressional Resolution that repeals consumer privacy regulations enacted by President Obama. By lifting those protections, internet service providers may now earn money by selling the personal information of its users.

One day later, State Senator Kennedy was out with a bill that would ban that practice in New York State. 

"New York State is one of the top in the nation when it comes to user access and broadband availability," Kennedy said. "We need to make sure that those who are using the internet are protected. The thought that internet providers can sell off personal, often very delicate information, is unfathomable."

Kennedy suggested that by lifting the protections enacted under the previous administration, companies could buy the personal information of employees and potentially use it against them. Health insurers could uncover and exploit pre-existing medical conditions of plan enrollees and either change the rates or cancel coverage. 

"It creates a whole host of problems that we didn't have to be concerned about prior to the repeal of this legislation," he said.

Michael Mroziak is an experienced, award-winning reporter whose career includes work in broadcast and print media. When he joined the WBFO news staff in April 2015, it was a return to both the radio station and to Horizons Plaza.
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