New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman Is Leading a Group of States Possibly Suing the FCC Over Net Neutrality
New York’s Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman is a name that we’ve been hearing more and more about. Although usually those outside of a state don’t really learn about what a State’s AG is doing, Schneiderman has taken the reins in a number of high-profile lawsuits taking aim at the current federal administration. He’s also the AG who has been working tirelessly for victims’ rights in NY by ensuring that victims of rape don’t have to pay for the forensic kits essential to catching their assailants.
Last month, Schneiderman slammed the FCC over their refusal to acknowledge thousands of comments left with the commission by citizens over Chair Ajit Pai’s then-planned decision to end net neutrality. In an open letter to Pai, Schneiderman said, “the process the FCC has employed to consider potentially sweeping alterations to current net neutrality rules has been corrupted by the fraudulent use of Americans’ identities — and the FCC has been unwilling to assist my office in our efforts to investigate this unlawful activity.”
What Schneiderman was referring to was an ongoing investigation by his office into a possible hack of the FCC’s commenting section, which, as early as April of this year, the AG had alerted the commission to, but to no avail. “For six months my office has been investigating who perpetrated a massive scheme to corrupt the FCC’s notice and comment process through the misuse of enormous numbers of real New Yorkers’ and other Americans’ identities. Such conduct likely violates state law — yet the FCC has refused multiple requests for crucial evidence in its sole possession that is vital to permit that law enforcement investigation to proceed.”
“My office analyzed the fake comments and found that tens of thousands of New Yorkers may have had their identities misused in this way. (Indeed, analysis showed that, in all, hundreds of thousands of Americans likely were victimized in the same way, including tens of thousands per state in California, Georgia, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and possibly others.) Impersonation and other misuse of a person’s identity violates New York law, so my office launched an investigation,” Schneiderman wrote.
With yesterday’s vote, Schneiderman’s renewed his actions against the FCC, and chances are, at least 18 other states will join them. California, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Massachusetts, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island all co-signed a letter to the FCC and Chairman Pai asking the commission to reconsider their plans to dismantle net neutrality.
As of press time, there is no final confirmation on whether any of the aforementioned states, or others, will be joining New York’s lawsuit.
What do you think of the pushback against yesterday’s net neutrality vote? Let us know @BritandCo!
(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)