Comcast, Google Can Publish Users' Email Contents

Comcast, Google Can Publish Users' Email Contents 620 310 C-Suite Network

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Comcast’s Terms of Service for its Xfinity Internet service gives it, its agents, suppliers and affiliates the right to “reproduce, publish, distribute and display” the content worldwide. It also lets third parties copy, republish or distribute material posted or transmitted using Xfinity Internet.

This would include confidential information sent by a company employee or an independent contractor to authorized persons over the service, independent security analyst Randy Abrams warned Tuesday.

The “excessively broad language” of Comcast’s ToS “should be of concern,” Abrams told the E-Commerce Times.

“There are no limitations or privacy controls with ISPs,” he pointed out.

“The revised language in our Residential Services Agreement is meant to make it clear that we are expressly authorized by the customer to send around what the customer wants to send around where we are the conduit or intermediary,” said Comcast spokesperson Jenni Moyer.

“We are not taking their content,” she told the E-Commerce Times.

It’s not just Comcast. Google’s ToS gives it — and the third parties it works with — a “worldwide license to use, host, store, reproduce, modify, create derivative works, communicate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display, and distribute” content users upload, submit, store, send or receive to or through its services.

This license continues even if a user stops using Google’s services — but the rights then apply to the limited purpose of operating, promoting and improving Google’s services, and developing new ones.

Where Google and Comcast Differ

Some Google services may offer users ways to access and remove content that has been provided to them, and some have terms or settings that narrow the…