FCC Proposes Rulemaking to Prevent Sale of Cell Phone Records

by Sabrina I. Pacifici on February 10, 2006

Press release: “The Federal Communications Commission today launched a proceeding to examine whether additional security measures could prevent the unauthorized disclosure of sensitive customer information held by telecommunications companies. In a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) adopted today, the Commission seeks comment on a variety of issues related to customer privacy, including what security measures carriers currently have in place, what inadequacies exist in those measures, and what kind of security measures may be warranted to better protect consumers’ privacy. The Notice grants a petition for rulemaking filed by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) expressing concerns about whether carriers are adequately protecting customer call records and other customer proprietary network information, or CPNI. EPIC claims that some data brokers have taken advantage of inadequate security standards to gain access to the information under false pretenses, such as by posing as the customer, and then offering the records for sale on the Internet. The practice is known as pretexting.”

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