Soon, Verizon will be watching you
October 6, 2015  //  By:   //  Consumer News  //  No Comment

In a barely noticed announcement, Verizon said it will soon be sharing profiles with AOL’s add network.

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ProPublica reported that the AOL network will be able to match millions of Internet users to their real-world details, including gender, age and interests. AOL’s network is on 40 percent of websites, according to ProPublica.

AOL will be able to use data from Verizon’s identifier to track the apps that mobile users open, the sites they visit, and the length of the visit.

The announcement, issued this month, states, “As you may have heard, AOL recently became a part of Verizon. We are providing you this notice to explain how Verizon and AOL will work together, and how this combination will help us deliver services that are more personalized and useful to you.”

Verizon purchased AOL earlier this year.

According to the Verizon website, the program will use postal and email addresses, certain information about the users Verizon products and services and information obtained from other companies such as gender, age and interests. The Verizon Selects program shares information about mobile web browsing, app and feature usage and the location of the user’s device.

“We do not share information that identifies you personally as part of these programs other than with vendors and partners who do work for us. We require that these vendors and partners protect the information and use it only for the services they are providing us,” the new policy states.

The cellphone giant claims they will only share its identifier with a “very limited” number of other partners.

Verizon users can opt-out by logging into their online account or calling 866-211-0874.

Image: Flickr/Mike Mozat

About the Author :

Carol Thompson is a veteran investigative reporter residing in central New York. She spent 23 years with a local newspaper, The Valley News, before leaving for the Syracuse New Times, and now, VNN. Thompson has won dozens of first-place awards for investigative reporting and was the 2006 recipient of the Syracuse Press Club’s prestigious Selwyn Kershaw Professional Standards Award. Thompson’s reporting has resulted in the arrest of public officials and has prompted policy changes. She uncovered two money laundering schemes that traveled the globe and resulted in the indictments of several developers.