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DAA sets mobile privacy enforcement date for AdChoices

The digital advertising business will begin self-policing its mobile privacy guidelines on September 1, an important extension of the Digital Advertising Alliance’s online self-regulatory program, called AdChoices, which gives consumers the ability to opt-out of targeted ads.

While the ad business often receives accolades for its self-regulation of consumer privacy from the Federal Trade Commission, it still faces headwinds in Washington over mobile data collection, especially as more and more devices are connected to the Internet.

Guidelines cover sensitive consumer information such as medical or financial information and any data used for eligibility purposes, is prohibited from collection. Data unique to mobile devices including geolocation and personal directory data, is also covered.

Any advertiser, publisher, carrier, ad network or app that collects data for targeted advertising across all mobile apps and platforms must demonstrate compliance with the guidelines. As part of the self-regulatory program, companies must also give consumers enhanced notice and choice to opt-out of data collection and use.

The Digital Advertising Alliance, a consortium of the nation’s largest media and marketing association, including the Association of National Advertisers, the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Interactive Advertising Bureau, was launched in 2010 with an online self-regulatory program. Adchoices gives consumers the option to opt-out of targeted ads by clicking on a little blue triangle-icon on the ad.

The mobile system is meant to give consumers a seamless experience for option-out of ads, whether online or on mobile devices. For opting out of mobile ads, consumers must download a free app, where they can set their preferences for data collection and use.

Enforcement is handled by the Direct Marketing Association, also a member of the DAA, and the Council for Better Business Bureaus. Since the launch of the online self-regulatory program, there have been 43 compliance actions. Depending on the nature of the compliance issue, the case could be referred to the FTC.