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European Net Neutrality is under attack, warns NordVPN

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When the US destroyed its net neutrality, millions of Europeans looked on secure in the thought that their net neutrality would be respected by the EU and its Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Unfortunately, this is not the case. Net neutrality is under attack by ISPs in the EU as well.

“EU ISPs — at least as many as 186 of them — are using something called Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) to read all of your traffic and decide whether they want you to be free online or not,” says Daniel Markuson, a digital privacy expert at NordVPN. “This —threatens net neutrality as we know it.”

According to Daniel Markuson, net neutrality is the idea that all internet connections should be treated equally. And even though BEREC —the EU’s electronic communications regulator —has a law guaranteeing net neutrality, some of the ISPs are lobbying actively to undermine this law. Recent findings provethat some of them are already ignoring it and violating EU users’ rights using loopholes.

“We have to understand that ISPs know how to sell surveillance and make it seem attractive,” comments NordVPN’s digital privacy expert. “Any service plan involving conditions based on the sites or services you use requires DPI for it to work. Is your ISP offering a plan where you can use a certain app without consuming your data? That’s DPI – they need to scan your traffic to do so. Are they offering a low-cost plan in exchange for blocking certain services or sites? That’s DPI.”

Once you accept DPI, ISPs can use it in many different ways. ISPs can throttle traffic, censor content, and track user traffic in greater detail than before. Indeed, ISPs were abusing this technology illegally before net neutrality was even repealed in the US.

By the way, EDRi, an EU digital rights organization that encompasses thousands of rights advocates and civil rights organizations, wrote a letter asking the EU to stand against ISPs’ lobbyingefforts and protect EU users’ rights.

“One of the few ways how to fight back is to use virtual private networks (VPNs). Using VPN will make DPI impossible, since your traffic will be secured by military-grade encryption and your ISP won’t be able to see it. That means they can’t discriminate against your traffic based on what you’re doing,” says Daniel Markuson, a digital privacy expert at NordVPN. “However, this is a purely private solution – you’ll only protect yourself and your family.”

By the way, EDRi, an EU digital rights organization that encompasses thousands of rights advocates and civil rights organizations, wrote a letter asking the EU to stand against ISPs’ lobbyingefforts and protect EU users’ rights.

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