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Inside Privacy Updates on Developments in Global Privacy & Data Security from Covington & Burling LLP

IAB’s Video Suite To Support Display of In-Ad Privacy Notices

Posted in Advertising & Marketing, Federal Trade Commission, Online, United States

The Digital Advertising Alliance’s Self-Regulatory Program for Online Behavioral Advertising continues to gather steam.  Last month, after the Program garnered favorable mention in the FTC’s final privacy report, a representative of the Interactive Advertising Bureau (one of the DAA’s participating organizations) announced that the Program’s Advertising Option Icon is now being served in more than one trillion online ads per month.

An announcement yesterday by the IAB suggests another milestone for the Program may be on the horizon: expansion into online streaming video.  The IAB revealed that its new suite of technical specifications and protocols for the serving of in-stream ads will enable the Icon to be served in or around such ads, allowing entities that collect behavioral data from video viewers to meet any obligations they may have under the DAA’s transparency and consumer control principles. 

The IAB’s announcement comes amid increasing demands by regulators and consumer advocates for improved disclosures and choices with respect to the collection of consumer data in certain contexts.  The FTC’s report urged companies to make appropriate disclosures — “outside of a privacy policy or other legal document” —  regarding data collection that is “inconsistent” with the context of a particular transaction or a customer’s relationship with the company.  The report noted that the Icon itself provides an example of an effective notice and choice mechanism.  Its expansion into online video advertising — an area where the FTC has recently shown some interest — should be viewed favorably by the Commission.