Reached by email, an FCC spokesperson said there would be "no comment" regarding the inspector general's offer and instead attacked Schneiderman's investigation, claiming its only objective is to delay the December 14th vote to repeal the Obama-era net neutrality rules-which the FCC refers to as "restoring Internet freedom".
On Monday, Schneiderman estimated that, in addition to swarms of computer-generated names, as many as 1 million comments were submitted using real people's identities without their knowledge. Last week, Schneiderman set up a website that allows New Yorkers to report if their name and identifying info was misused to make a fraudulent net neutrality feedback comment appear legitimate. But Schneiderman said that they approached Pai's staff nine times to obtain records, yet it was only on Monday morning that the FCC's office of inspector general offered to assist.
Schneiderman said that his call for a halt to the vote was "not a dispute on the merits" of whether the rules should be repealed or kept in place, as there have been doubts about the authenticity of comments coming from both sides of the debate. Adding to the already record-breaking number of public comments submitted to the FCC over the last several months, more than 760,000 calls have flooded congressional phone lines since November 21, according to Battle for the Net. A statement from the FCC chairman even claims that scrapping net neutrality protections is to keep the government from micromanaging the internet.
After learning that Schneiderman meant to hold a press conference on Monday afternoon alongside FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, the FCC Office of Inspector General reportedly contacted the NY attorney general by email and offered its assistance with the investigation.
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The agent, Peter Strzok , is considered one of the most experienced and trusted F.B.I. counterintelligence investigators. An FBI official assigned to Special Counsel Robert S.
The FCC is expected to vote on February 14 on Chairman Ajit Pai's plan to scrap the 2015 landmark net neutrality rules, moving to give broadband service providers sweeping power over what content consumers can access.
Under Pai's proposal, the Obama-era rules would be reversed and ISPs would only have to disclose blocking or throttling. That's unacceptable. The FCC needs to correct this course immediately. An FCC spokesperson previously dismissed the complaints as "nothing more than a transparent attempt by a partisan supporter of the Obama Administration's heavy-handed internet regulations to gain publicity for himself".
"It is clear that our process for serving the public interest is broken and I do not believe that the agency should move forward until a credible investigation is completed".
Based on Schneiderman's investigation, residents of California, Georgia, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas may have also had their personal information used to submit comments on net neutrality, Rosenworcel said.