Several posts mention the idea, “How much do you trust your ISP?” I’d like to explore that question. I’ll share my thoughts and then listen to your advice.
I conclude that I won’t trust my ISP. Why? First, I live in the USA where Net Neutrality is gone and domestic spying is law (Patriot Act and such) and opaque (low transparency or honesty from govt agencies). Second, I have direct experience from marketing experts about the data they can append/buy from third parties on people. So many demographics/interests and more. And consider this is on the “light side” of the Web. This data is coming from somewhere. Third, I have two ISP options where I live for “good” service. Both are brands of large corporations. My choices (that I know of) are limited.
Now, I do not have evidence that data is collected by my ISP (Spectrum, a sub-brand of a larger communications firm). Data collection isn’t some they would chat with me about. I assume they gather whatever they want. Last I looked in their terms of service, they are allowed to gather what they want. Further, I have no way to “trust and verify.” How would I even engage my ISP to honestly disclose what is mined from my data let alone sold to whom?
So, for those in the USA and in this community who may write, “I trust my ISP”, I’d like to know how you came to that conclusion? How would I do a much better job to understand how much I may trust my ISP? I am genuinely curious.
Right now I err on the side of caution which is that I assume my ISP will gather whatever they may on me to sell at an additional profit. That’s why I use a VPN. And, I realize I am then trusting the VPN as my ISP. To me, this is a “wiser bet” as VPN providers have greater transparency than my ISP and are vetted by others (such as this community).
Granted, I have a low threat model. Still, how do others come to a conclusion about their ISP?