America’s largest internet service providers have told the Senate Commerce Committee that they do not engage in behavior that infringes on customers’ privacy.
Executives for Verizon Communications, Time Warner Cable and AT&T testified before the committee, claiming that they do not track users’ online habits and sell the information to advertisers.
They also proposed that a "self-regulatory approach" should be adopted in regard to customer privacy, in which people would be asked to give permission before their surfing could be monitored for targeted advertising.
Not everyone is sure if this plan would be successful. Gigi Sohn, president of advocacy group Public Knowledge, told lawmakers that "gaps in the law have allowed the privacy of some internet users to fall between the cracks."
Meanwhile, a recent poll by the Consumer Reports National Research Center revealed that online privacy is a major concern for many Americans, with 72 percent of respondents saying that they are uneasy about the potential for companies to track their internet behavior.
Also, 93 percent think that organizations should always ask permission before using their information.