Changes made by Verizon in its Selects program have also changed at least the privacy settings of some subscribers. Verizon (COM)Engadget’s former parent company) collected user location data, web browsing and mobile app usage to send them marketing messages or offers under Selection, although subscribers could opt out if they wished. As Ars Technica notes, the operator recently replaced its Selects program with Verizon Custom Experience Plus and Custom Experience. And that’s all right, except that users received emails telling them they were automatically signed up.
In the email, Verizon stated that they will be included in the programs, which means that their data will be collected, even if they have previously given up their participation in the Selects. Custom Experience collects only the history of browsing and using applications, while the Plus version also collects location information and data on numbers that users call and call.
On its FAQ page, Verizon said it does not sell user data, but shares it with service providers who work with them. “These service providers must use the information only for the purposes defined by Verizon, and not for their own or others’ marketing or advertising purposes,” the company wrote. The provider also wrote that it reviews information for no more than 6 months. Stores location and phone number information for approximately one year.
Users will need to log out again in order to be removed from the program. While we’re sure many subscribers wouldn’t like to be enrolled in marketing programs they’ve previously decided not to participate in, at least it’s easy to unsubscribe. They can go to the privacy settings page of their Verizon account or “My Verizon” in their mobile app and go to “Manage Settings” or “Manage Privacy Settings” to turn off both programs.
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