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The risks of losing internet neutrality

The growth of the internet within modern society has no parallel in the history of mankind. The internet has brought great opportunities for our daily life, world trade, the development of technologies, and has modified the behavior of society; thus, being connected also brings challenges and new threats to society.
In the first place, we had to learn to deal with the phenomenon. As is known, legal reforms are not always going at the speed of changes in society. For example, the low regulation of these services allowed the creation of monopolies, as happened in the 1990s in the USA. UU., Where AT & T became the only internet provider. The US government reacted by regulating the provision of Internet services with the Telecommunications Law of 1996, whose purpose was to prevent the appearance of new monopolies and encourage competition.
On the other hand, a whole new range of criminal activities that operate through the Internet have been opened, such as the increase of illegal child pornography networks, the theft of information and identity, cyber attacks against private and public companies, among others. These crimes, without doubt, represent major challenges for governments around the world. The debate that has opened, on the one hand, these new criminal behaviors, and, on the other, the development of new businesses, such as the companies of the Fintech sector, is the subject of Internet regulation. To what extent do the limits of the users and where should the State supervise its use?
The current discussion on internet regulation focuses on whether all data traffic that goes through the network indiscriminately should be treated; without charging users a fee depending on the content, web page, platform or application used. This is known as internet neutrality. However, not everyone is in favor of this neutrality.
In Mexico, the Federal Telecommunications Law states that companies that provide Internet access services must be guided by the principles of free choice, non-discrimination, privacy, transparency and information, traffic management, quality, sustained development of infrastructure, and Companies must provide the Internet service respecting the agreement with the user regardless of the content, origin, terminal destination or application. In this way, the neutrality of the internet was protected.
In the USA On the other hand, there is no such neutrality. Since 2017, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced the repeal of the neutrality rules. This gives freedom to the companies that provide the service to experiment with new prices, prioritize, or block content without having to render accounts to users. Some of the consequences do not fall directly on users, but are reflected in online services, for example, in e-commerce or streaming services.
It is worth remembering in the Mexico-United States-Canada Treaty (T-MEC) that could replace NAFTA, there is a chapter of digital regulations, where rules are established in terms of electronic commerce, intellectual property in the digital world, and regulations in telecommunications. The experts, however, affirm that autonomy and sovereignty over the neutrality of the network in the three countries will be maintained.

If your business depends on the internet to operate, you need to be aware of the international regulations on the matter. We can help you, write to info@riesgospoliticos.com.mx.

Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash

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One thought on “The risks of losing internet neutrality

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