We have flashbacks to 2012, as it spreads across the web at Verizon automatically enrolled its wireless clients in what is called a Verizon personalized experience program. TL; DR: It’s data collection bullshit designed to better target you for the purpose of selling ads.
In a wider distribution, what does VCE do? It collects way too much personal information for my liking, so according to Verizon website, uses this data to “personalize our communications with you, give you more relevant product and service recommendations, and develop plans, services and offers that are most relevant to you.”
Specifically, VCE collects your app usage, web history, location, and people you contact. Sounds a bit much, right?
According to the digging of Grab and Gizmodo, we can already tell you that Verizon retains data on which websites a user visits for “no more than six months” and retains Location Information and Proprietary Network Information (CPNI) for up to one year. . In addition, call records, including times and duration of calls, are saved, although conversations and text messages are not used.
If that’s not what you signed up for and you want to talk to GTFO about it, I don’t blame you. Fortunately, the process for exiting VCE is fairly straightforward. Open the My Verizon app on your smartphone, go to the Settings tab, and then locate the Privacy Settings menu where you will see the option to turn off Custom Experience and Custom Experience Plus. Once located, press “Do not use” for both programs. That will be the end of it all… for now.
While you’re at it, there are likely some additional data collection settings in the app. Go ahead and turn it all off. Verizon will try to trick you into thinking everything stays on, but yes, this is all a lie. Turn off everything.
I have to think if Verizon were more transparent with things like this, it wouldn’t be that shocking and infuriating. But no, they go for the sneaky auto-enrollment tactic, which must leave a nasty taste in a customer’s mouth. It’s disgusting, with Verizon customers already paying large sums of money for cellular service, it’s like Verizon feels entitled to have this data. Customer privacy concerns are at an all time high and this is just the latest scum from a big business that should be better informed.