TACODA Publishes Data Guidelines

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Behavioral ad network TACODA has published a set of security guidelines to let publishers, advertisers and users know how it uses and secures the ad serving data gathered from its Audience Networks behavioral ad platform.

Behavioral advertising networks serve ads to consumers by tracking their behavior and identifying them anonymously. That monitoring can make a lot of users nervous, and for good reason.

Last year, after AOL researchers released supposedly anonymous data on customer search behavior, a New York Times reporter was able to track down and identify user number 4417749, Thelma Arnold of Georgia, after analyzing her online behavior patterns. In 2006, there were also high profile thefts of supposedly secure customer data from bulwarks like banks, credit card companies, and even the U.S. government.

According to TACODA’s new “Guiding Principles for Data Usage,” advertisers and publishers will both own their own campaign and audience data, which means TACODA won’t share data between companies including response metrics and click stream data. TACODA will compensate publishers in a transparent way when their data is used to serve ads, and the network will only use anonymous data for campaign reporting.

TACODA also pledges to give customers the opportunity to opt-out of its data collection system and to never collect any data that can be personally identifiable or related to sensitive concerns like personal health or information about children under the age of thirteen.

“The protection of user privacy and the principles of notice, choice and transparency are hallmarks of TACODA’s business,” said Mark Pinney, TACODA’s chief privacy officer, in a statement. “Trust is not just a slogan at TACODA, it is standard operating procedure.”

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