Comcast cable giant thinks your privacy should come with an added fee.
Comcast cable argues that it should be perfectly acceptable to charge customers more if they don’t want to be spied on. It sounds like hyperbole, doesn’t it? Comcast’s statement is quite clear, though. It’s not even the only ISP that thinks so. This dispute came up because AT&T U-verse customers in some markets were subjected to aggressive deep packet inspection to monitor everything they did online. This data was then sold to advertisers. They could opt-out of the innocuously named “internet preferences” snooping… for an extra $30-60 per month. Comcast’s proverbial ears probably perked up at the mention of all that new profit.
Comcast hasn’t launched anything like AT&T U-verse internet preferences, but it definitely wants to have the option to do so. In its FCC filing, the ISP compares tracking its customers to the sort of tracking already going on around the internet. Comcast says a “bargained-for exchange of information” is a common business practice, and ISPs should not be prohibited from striking such deals.