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Guide

Open Internet Transparency Rule

The FCC is focused on ensuring that every American has access to robust high-speed Internet service – better known as broadband – to harness the benefits of broadband-enabled technology and improve lives. That access includes the right to accurate information so consumers can choose, monitor and receive the broadband Internet services they have been promised.

The FCC's Open Internet Transparency Rule empowers consumers to make informed choices about broadband services.  The Rule requires that what providers tell you about their broadband service is sufficient for you to make informed choices – including choices about speed and price.  The Rule also requires that providers' information about their broadband service must be accurate and truthful. 

The Rule covers disclosures about "network management practices, performance, and commercial terms of service." The Rule applies to service descriptions, including expected and actual broadband speed and latency.  The Rule also applies to pricing, including monthly prices, usage-based fees, and any other additional fees that consumers may be charged. Additionally, it covers providers' network management practices, such as congestion management practices and the types of traffic subject to those practices.

The FCC monitors how well providers disclose the broadband speed they give consumers, and at what price, and is concerned about providers who make false, misleading, or deceptive statements to consumers about the services they provide.  

For a report on service providers' broadband performance, see the FCC's Measuring Broadband America report: http://www.fcc.gov/measuring-broadband-america

Test Your Broadband Speed

The FCC encourages you to test your broadband speeds using any number of free, online tests, and notify the FCC if your service doesn't measure up to your provider's advertised speed.

To test mobile broadband performance on iPhone and Android devices, use the FCC's Mobile Broadband Speed Test App.  Learn more: http://www.fcc.gov/measuring-broadband-america/mobile

Notify the FCC About Open Internet Transparency Issues

Providers that violate the Transparency Rule harm consumers and may be subject to enforcement action, which potentially includes monetary penalties prescribed under the Communications Act.

To notify the FCC about your concerns of possible violations of the Open Internet Transparency Rule, go to www.fcc.gov/complaints or contact the FCC's Consumer Center by calling 1-888-CALL-FCC (1-888-225-5322) voice or 1-888-TELL-FCC (1-888-835-5322) TTY; faxing 1-866-418-0232; or writing to:

Federal Communications Commission
Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau
Consumer Inquiries and Complaints Division
445 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC  20554

For information about other telecommunications issues, visit the FCC's consumer website at www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/consumer-publications-library.

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This document is for consumer education purposes only and is not intended to affect any proceedings or cases involving this subject matter or related issues.

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Open Internet Transparency Rule Guide (pdf)

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