The Better Business Bureau’s Online Interest-Based Advertising Accountability Program has cracked down on two digital advertising companies for allegedly violating the industry’s self-regulatory principles concerning interest-based advertising.
In the case of Exponential Interactive, the accountability program decision reminds third-party advertisers, as defined in the Digital Advertising Alliance Self-Regulatory Principles, that they are obliged to provide enhanced notice when collecting IBA data from non-affiliated websites. Third parties are generally ad tech companies, as distinguishable from first parties, generally website and mobile app publishers. Even though Exponential Interactive did not have direct access to the non-affiliated website, the accountability program still found that, as a third party, the company was obliged to ensure that consumers received enhanced notice.
In the case of Adbrain, the accountability program investigated the company for failing to provide an “easy-to-use” tool allowing consumers to opt-out of IBA data collection activities on non-affiliated mobile apps. In its cross-app guidance, the DAA has mandated that consumers be allowed to easily exercise choice with regard to collection across platforms.
These latest enforcement efforts are a reminder to companies that industry watchdogs are standing by to enforce the notice and choice principles enshrined in self-regulatory principles.