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Location: Sitting inside a TV truck, Somewhere, more then likely in the Southeastern region, United States

I am a grouchy, bald headed old fart filled with opinions and not the least bit shy about sharing them.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Verizon Wireless wants to sell your call records

Romulis, MI - An article in today's Slashdot pissed me off beyond belief. According to the article Verizon Wireless is making to sell your call detail records to their partners. These details will include date, time, length of call and calling or called phone number. A notice (Sideways PDF) was included in recently mailed statements.

Fortunately for us, someone working at Skydeck actually read the notice and posted it on their blog.
Two of us just received a notice from Verizon Wireless about CPNI. CPNI stands for Customer Proprietary Network Information: our call records, essentially. What numbers we called, how often, how long we spent on the phone, and how much it cost us. (It does not include our own names, numbers, or addresses.)

Verizon wants to share this data with third parties, and of course they need our permission: “you have a right, and we have a duty, under federal and state law, to protect the confidentiality of your CPNI.”

But that duty only goes so far: “Unless you provide us [Verizon Wireless] with notice that you wish to opt out within 30 days of receiving this letter, we will assume that you give the Verizon Companies the right to share your CPNI with the authorized companies as described above.”

Skydeck: Get Ready For More Advertising On Your Cell Phone

The fact that Verizon Wireless customers must take action to keep these assholes from selling their personal information is an obscene abuse of customer good will in my book. If you are a Verizon Wireless customer and object to having your call detail records sold here's what you do:
Call 1-800-333-9956 and follow automated attendant instructions. You will need your billing zip code and account password (if you use one).

Verizon Wireless just went from the best to somewhere near the worse in my book.

The eternal skeptic in me wondered if this was an elaborate scam designed to to pry my account information and password from me. Sadly, after calling Verizon Wireless customer service, I found it is all too true.

Those bastards!


This has been a learning experience for me. I also thought that privacy was something we were granted in the Constitution. I have learned from this when in fact the word privacy does not appear in the Constitution.
- Bill Maher

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