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President-elect Donald Trump during his transition is relying on two American Enterprise Institute contributors for advice on technology policy, which consists of calls for deregulation of the National Security Agency and an end to net neutrality. […]

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The Federal Communications Commission voted to adopt new online consumer privacy rules that would require Internet service providers to obtain opt-in consent for the collection of sensitive information and opt-out consent for any other information.






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Following concerns from data privacy officials, Tom Wheeler, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, proposed new rules for online consumer privacy that require Internet service providers to obtain opt-in consent for the collection of sensitive information, opt-out consent for any other information, and heightened disclosure for “pay for privacy” options.






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(Image: Shutterstock)

A month after FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s blog post urging wireless and wireline phone companies to offer call-blocking services to their customers at no cost, there are more changes afoot concerning robocalls. The FCC recently issued new rules restricting debt collection companies from calling cellphones to collect on any money owed to or guaranteed by the Federal government, including Federal student loans, mortgages and taxes.






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FCC HQ

The Federal Communications Commission gave final approval for Telcordia, a subsidiary of the Swedish company Ericsson, to be the next Local Number Portability Administrator, despite protests from the current LNPA that the FCC ignored national security implications and withheld information when choosing a new company.






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Rural areas hoping for Internet access faced a setback when a Federal court decided that the FCC doesn’t have the power to block state laws that hinder access to cheap, publicly managed broadband service. However, electric companies in Oklahoma and Massachusetts are providing broadband to rural communities by addressing Internet as a utility.






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mapp

The Federal Communications Commission released its broadband health mapping tool, Connect2Health (C2H), which shows areas of the United States that lack broadband connectivity and health care resources. “It becomes a powerful storyteller,” said FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler. “It becomes a story of what is possible and what is needed.”






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calls

Despite current consumer protection efforts such as required prior consent and the Do Not Call registry, thousands of people are inundated with unwanted calls every day. Now, the Federal Communications Commission is fighting back to stop these robocalls and telemarketing calls. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler wrote a blog post urging wireless and wireline phone companies to offer call-blocking services to their customers at no cost.






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5G