BadPhorm - When good ISPs go bad! :: Forums :: Fight Back :: Complaints about Phorm
 
<< Previous thread | Next thread >>
VM Privacy / Data Protection
Moderators: Jim Murray, narcosis, felixcatuk, Sammy, revrob
Author Post
MGP
Tue Feb 26 2008, 08:43PM
Registered Member #30
Joined: Tue Feb 26 2008, 08:34PM
Posts: 13
Virgin Media supposedly, at least according to their website, have a specific department to deal with protection of privacy issues. At least that's the case according to their Privacy Policy

Attached is a letter I sent to them a few days ago. I'm going to be amazed if I get a reply:

Group Compliance
Virgin Media
160 Great Portland Street
London
W1W 5QA


Dear Sirs

Subscriber Privacy: Virgin Media & Phorm

I read with some disgust and alarm of the proposed tie up between Virgin Media & Phorm. This apparently, somehow, involves the disclosure by Virgin Media, to a third party (Phorm) of my web browsing habits, supposedly for marketing purposes.

I am not clear how exactly this works, and frankly am not interested in the technology. I am concerned about my privacy, which I expect you to reasonably protect.

I can find nothing in Virgin Media’s stated privacy policies, terms and conditions or service, or indeed anywhere else that permits Virgin Media to disclose my browsing habits or indeed any personal information to third parties, other than as specifically required by law. Indeed, until recently, there were clauses in the Acceptable Use Policy which indicated that as my ISP you did not even monitor how I used my services. That seems to have been insidiously dropped. Perhaps you can explain how, in view of your policies Virgin Media can now disclose my information without my specific consent?

My interpretation of guidance from the Information Commissioners Office, and elsewhere is that this advertising system would be an electronic transmission and thus requires me to specifically opt in. I hereby confirm I do not opt in. Indeed it should not be necessary for me to even have to spell this out to Virgin Media.

I also note it might be the intention of Virgin Media and / or Phorm to operate an “opt out” system which relies on cookies placed on a users computer. Such a practice is flawed. I am not obliged to retain on my computer any means of storage of information of my preferences, which may be used by others. Please see the Information Commissioner’s Office: Guidance on the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003, Part 2, section 2.2. Thus reliance on a cookie to prevent transmission of my browsing habits to Phorm via Virgin Media, or simply to prevent me seeing their served up electronic ads breaches these rules. I confirm I do not give consent for such a cookie to be placed on my computer. Thus Virgin Media, if they persist with this ill-advised scheme, must find another method of securing my privacy.

For the avoidance of doubt, I do not consent to my browsing habits, or indeed any other personal data being disclosed to third parties, or even other Virgin Group companies. This applies to any marketing or other purposes that are not directly associated with the supply of the services I have contracted to receive.

At best this smacks of sharp practice in order to prop up Virgin Media’s poor balance sheet. At worst, this whole thing is probably illegal.

Yours faithfully
Back to top
Redmeat
Tue Feb 26 2008, 09:11PM
Registered Member #19
Joined: Mon Feb 25 2008, 07:56PM
Posts: 18
*Copy* *Paste* *Change a few words* *Print*
Back to top
MGP
Tue Feb 26 2008, 09:14PM
Registered Member #30
Joined: Tue Feb 26 2008, 08:34PM
Posts: 13
I should have said "Please do feel free to use copy amend" :D
Back to top
Jim Murray
Tue Feb 26 2008, 09:17PM

Registered Member #1
Joined: Thu Feb 21 2008, 08:29PM
Posts: 350
MGP wrote ...
Virgin Media supposedly, at least according to their website, have a specific department to deal with protection of privacy issues. At least that's the case according to their Privacy Policy Attached is a letter I sent to them a few days ago. I'm going to be amazed if I get a reply: 


MGP, with your permission I'd like to use that as the basis for the complaint template to Virgin Media. Would you mind if I were to take that and make it available as such on this site?
Back to top
MGP
Tue Feb 26 2008, 11:32PM
Registered Member #30
Joined: Tue Feb 26 2008, 08:34PM
Posts: 13
Jim, no problem with use of that in any form.
Back to top
APEGIA
Fri Feb 29 2008, 01:32PM
Registered Member #52
Joined: Fri Feb 29 2008, 01:29PM
Posts: 2
Isn't this an infringement of The Telecommunications (Lawful Business Practice) (Interception of Communications) Regulations 2000

It must surely give rise to access to sensitive data under the Data Protection Act which requires express consent!
Back to top
rsw9975
Wed Mar 05 2008, 06:29PM
Registered Member #92
Joined: Tue Mar 04 2008, 07:20PM
Posts: 38
Thanks MGP,

I've taken this as the inspiration for a letter to Sir Branson at Virgin Management. I'll post any correspondence as/when I get a reply.

<:3_)~
Back to top
MGP
Mon Mar 10 2008, 12:16AM
Registered Member #30
Joined: Tue Feb 26 2008, 08:34PM
Posts: 13
I have received a reply to this letter. I'll post a copy when I get access to a scanner.

The reply doesn't really say much other than Virgin Media have yet to implement it and will undergo rigourous due diligence. Apparently all customers will be notified before implementation, and will not be forced to use the system. Unfortunately the Virgin Media letter doesn't really deal with the fact that, by my having written to them, I have now opted out.
Back to top
Huw Jerse
Mon Mar 10 2008, 08:21PM
Registered Member #112
Joined: Thu Mar 06 2008, 09:58PM
Posts: 45
I've taken this as a start point for a letter to my MP - he's usually quite responsive on these things - and quite techy too for an MP :)
Back to top
 

Jump:     Back to top

Syndicate this thread: rss 0.92 Syndicate this thread: rss 2.0 Syndicate this thread: RDF
Powered by e107 Forum System