Verizon wants to monitor your web habits, if this bothers you -- opt out

Priacy policies. A touchy subject for some and if you're a Verizon customer who is concerned with such things you'll want to make sure you're up-to-date on some new privacy policy changes happening.

Verizon has updated some of their terms this week and those updates, now state that Verizon will use your info for "certain business and marketing reports" and for "making mobile ads you see more relevant."  In other words, Verizon will be tracking URLs of websites you visit and also your device's location data while sharing it with outside companies. Doesn't sound all that great does it?

Verizon does however offer you the option to opt out if you visit their privacy policy page (opens in new tab) and make some changes. The page has two different places where you can check "Don't use my information" for any or all of your Verizon cell numbers.

Having the option to opt out is great! Having been opted in by default -- not so great. If you're not down with Verizon doing this, then make sure you opt out (opens in new tab) as soon as possible.

Source: Computer World

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  • Thanks for the tip :)
  • Does this apply to DSL service as well? I assume it does but thought I'd ask.
  • Same question but for FiOS. I'm on Sprint for mobile, but have Verizon service as my home ISP. My odd fetishes will remain personal if I can help it.
  • Evil Monkey I am not sure there is much call for advertisements for small primates in grass skirts doing a hula dance but then I could be wrong.
  • Verizon & Verizon Wireless are two different companies. So, while there may be a similar thing happening on the DSL/FiOS service, this information is not directly applicable.
  • Thanks for the info, just changed it, took 2 seconds but if you didn't tell me, I would have never have known.. Also, out of nowhere, I got a notification on my phone for an app, it said, your battery is dying? Try this new app? that has never happened before, could they be related?
  • where, exactly was this "notification"?
  • Popped up on my notification bar.. There was a green plus (+) sign that I have never seen before.. So I pulled down the notification bar & there was a message for an app saying my battery is dying & when I clicked on it, it brought me to the app market for an app that helps with battery usage.. Kind of a aggravated me, I don't want app advertising on my phone.. If this is going to happen then I will either switch phones or carriers..
  • That's probably from Airpush, which apps use to push you advertisements. You can get Airpush detector for free, and it will tell you which apps are doing it. You can then delete that app, or go to and enter your IMEI to block all future ads. There's supposed to be an app that will do that for you, but it has mixed reviews on whether it actually works.
  • Did you change and save all three separate option settings?
  • "Also, out of nowhere, I got a notification on my phone for an app, it said, your battery is dying? Try this new app? that has never happened before, could they be related?" That's AirPush, and it's one of the worst ways to advertise ever. Try to find whatever app you installed that has AirPush built-in, uninstall it, and tell off the dev.
  • How do I find out which app has that Air Push? And yes I will tell him to go fuck himself.. That pissed me off to no end
  • There's an app you can use. Search through the market or AppBrain market. It's how I found AirPush.
  • Very Easy to do
  • Another verizon dud
  • Yeah another dud, hey at least you can say no!
  • Another pointless post
  • It could be worse, it could be Sprint. Nah, nothing's worse than Sprint as it is.
  • Thanks for the tip
  • Thanks for the heads up, done!
  • Does that mean that Verizon is going to start sending me ads for naked women?
  • Another thank you for this great posting... the email was way too confusing!!!
  • I clicked the link and do not see where to opt out of anything.
  • Click where it says " the option to opt out if you visit their privacy policy page"
  • i clicked on that link and i get to a page that says Customer Privacy Settings and the only one that I see is for the Location Based Services but nothing like what this article talks about.
  • Same with me. When I click the link above, I get taken to a login page. Then when I login all I get is a "Location Based Services ("LBS") Privacy Settings" options.. and when I click on any of those links, I use no "Location based services" apps. Wondering if my account has to be the master account since I am on a family plan and I am not the master account. And that's exactly what the problem was. You need to be using the master account to be able to change privacy settings above.
  • When I click the link, after logging in, it takes me to the privacy page and the option to opt out is in 2 separate tables/grids at the bottom of that page.
  • Three. You have to expand all of the paragraphs to see them all.
  • Thanks...I missed that third one.
  • AHHHH.... Very sneaky with that 3rd one, Verizon.
  • wtf is up with these companies opting everyone in all the time. jesus. i'm sick of always having to opt out of sh1t.
  • Shouldn't they ask if you want to OPT IN, before you have to opt out?
  • Just did mine. Thanks for the info
  • Thanks for the links & instructions to opt out. I got the email notice from Verizon last Wednesday of the policy changing, but didn't take a lot of time reading thru it yet.
  • Thank you for the info!
  • Thanks for the heads up! Verizon is pushing it really. They must want customers to leave over stupid things like this.
  • I have fios too. But where do you go to opt-out? They don't make it easy to find on their website. I log on, but I don't know where the Opt out option is. Does anyone know?
  • I also have Fios but it was easier to click the link above from your phone, log in & you will be on the correct page.., also make sure you opt out of ALL.. There are 3 different settings to click on & have to save one, scroll down, click & save the 2nd then scroll down & do the 3rd
  • Great job sharing this Chris/AC. I imagine most people would've missed this completely. I know I would've. Thanks!
  • Even if you opt out does it truly mean you opt out? Hmm lmao
  • Thanks for the heads up. I just changed my settings.
  • Found on my wireless settings when I logged into my account on the web. Hit the Privacy button and was the second option listed as "Business & Marketing Reports". Looks like it was automatically turned on. Turned off for all phones on account and saved. Group description reads.
    Business & Marketing Reports Verizon Wireless may use mobile usage information and consumer Information for certain business and marketing reports. Mobile usage information includes the addresses or information in URLs (such as search terms) of websites you visit when you use our wireless service, the location of your device ("Location Information"), and your use of applications and features. Consumer information includes information about your use of Verizon products and services (such as data and calling features,device type, and amount of use) as well as demographic and interest categories provided to us by other companies (such as gender, age range, sports fan, frequent diner, or pet owner). We will combine this information in a manner that does not personally identify you. We will use this information to prepare business and marketing reports that we may use ourselves or share with others. We may also share Location Information with other companies in a way that does not personally identify you. We will allow these companies to produce limited business and marketing reports. See our Frequently Asked Questions for more information about these reports. You have a choice about whether we use your information for these reports.
  • Got the email earlier this evening and immediately opted out. They won't share your data with other companies, but will give it to other companies to target ads. WTF?
  • Wow, you guys are great. Just took care of that by following your link. Without you I doubt I would have even known about this little privacy invasion.
  • Thanks for the heads up. I opted out on all my lines.
  • I have the Motorola Xoom with 3G/4G. I do not have a data plan and only use the wireless network capability to connect. I'm unable to create a Verizon account without a # in order to opt out. So is Verizon still able to track or monitor my web habits based on serial number or some other unique identifier? Thanks
  • I would think that since you aren't using Verizon's data & were strictly using WiFi, it wouldn't be an issue for you.
  • Why do Verizon customers keep going back for more abuse. I seriously want to know. It makes no sense.
  • The network. In many places, VZW has better coverage than anyone else. I live just outside DC, but I'd have to go over a mile away from my home to get a signal with ATT or TMO. And besides, for the most part the TelCos are all anti-consumer.
  • Simple, they have the best 3G & 4G network, hands down. I find it ironic that you would be asking this question though. Haven't all Cubs fans been "going back for more abuse" for about 103 years now? I seriously want to know. It makes no sense. LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL!!
  • Read the fine print of opting out! This is absolutely NON CUSTOMER friendly!!!! "Please note that many opt-outs are cookie-based. If you buy a new computer, change web browsers or delete the cookies on your computer, you will need to opt-out again. Please also note that some wireless devices, portals and websites have limited ability to use and store cookies. As a result, advertising entities may have a limited ability to use cooki...." They have made opting out completely useless if you clean out your cookies. Let's say that you have 4 lines attached to your account, everyone prior to logging into Verizon needs to clear their cookies. on every computer, phone and tablets that they will be using. Why you say? Prior to logging in, you will have visited several website. And guess what? Verizon states the following: "You have choices about whether certain information collected on websites, including Verizon's, is used to customize advertising based on predictions generated from your visits over time and across different websites." Predictions generated from your visits over time. This means that when you first log into Verizon's website, let's say on work computer, Verizon can automatically capture all the webpages you have visited because you have no cookies on that computer stating that you don't want to have your data extracted. This is total crap!!!!! It's a nightmare for any user to always have to login to Verizon and have to re-opt-out!!! Especially if you clear your cookies on a regular basis.
  • I am actually one of those people of the mindset, that I am glad people are automatically opted in, because this kind of research improves my internet experience bringing targeted browsing, ads, links, and even maybe friends in the far future right to my doorstop, just for using my phone. It means I wont be bothered with things I don't care about, or don't want to look at. It's scientific progress, and I don't care if people look at what I'm doing behind my back, because I'm not one of those jerks who wouldn't tell them in the first place. Yes I feel strongly about this, opting out is opting out of scientific progress.
  • You say that now, but wait until a FIOS sales rep shows up at your door wearing a furry suit...
  • Check back and make sure you opted out of everything. If you hit the three radio boxes, and then one of the three submit buttons, only the radio button selection over the "save changes" button you clicked will be saved. That's right: 1. Opt out radio button one, click "save changes" button one.
    2. Opt out radio button two, click "save changes" button two.
    3. Opt out radio button three, click "save changes" button three.
    4. Head over to the consumerist and commence bitching.
  • Besides the acrobatic moves you need to make to opt-out, if you delete the cookies, you are automatically opted back in and will have to repeat the process. Also, the settings are only good for 1 device.
  • I don't know what is going on, but I am not being taken to a page where there are three areas to opt out. I only get one grid that would let me opt out of the CPNI info, but tells me that it can't process my request when I try to opt out of that. Nothing else shows up and I have been all over the VZW site trying to find out how to opt out. I am on a business plan and I am the main account holder, but I wouldn't think that would make a difference in the website. I have tried on my computer and through my phone and it's always the CPNI page and it always tells me that it can't process my request. Any help?
  • Thanks for writing this story.
  • Ok Im confused to. There are 3 options, cpni,business and marketing and relevant mobile advertising. Which or any of these do I want to check? I want some apps to work but dont want them to track me.
  • This is just for personal Verizon accounts. I am checking with my company's Verizon rep to see how we can opt out for phones attached to a business account. I had to purchase my device, but my company pays my voice and data charges. But I still want to opt out of this new policy.
  • Ok Personal Accounts. So do I need to elect out of all 3 or just the first and third. Still want to use some apps that and based on your location etc...
  • This paranoia about targeted marketing is ridiculous. I'm a guy, and I don't need to see ads about tampons. If I can't block ads, I'd prefer that the ads AT LEAST be relevant to me.
  • VZW subscribers are very similar to Apple users, just lost in the sauce. I guess in this case it would be the big red sauce. Brainwashed with the blinders on.