Online behav­iour­al adver­tis­ing code released How do you want your cook­ies crumbled?

In brief: Indus­try coali­tion releas­es vol­un­tary Guide­line — Web users to have abil­i­ty to opt out of OBA

In late March 2011, an Aus­tralian adver­tis­ing indus­try coali­tion released its Aus­tralian Best Prac­tice Guide­line for Online Behav­iour­al Adver­tis­ing (OBA, also known as Inter­est Based Advertising).

What is Online Behav­iour­al Advertising?

Often in web­site terms and con­di­tions and pri­va­cy poli­cies, the web­site provider alerts the web user that the web­site col­lects cook­ies” from users dur­ing their vis­its to the website.

You will have noticed that when you are doing search­es online or reg­u­lar­ly using a news por­tal or Face­book, adver­tise­ments pop up that seem uncan­ni­ly close to your inter­ests. This is online behav­iour­al adver­tis­ing. This is where the his­to­ry of the activ­i­ty on a device is used to gen­er­ate more tar­get­ed advertising.

Third Par­ty OBA

The self-reg­u­lat­ing Guide­line cov­ers Third Par­ty OBA”, which is when brows­ing behav­iour is used to deliv­er behav­iour­al adver­tise­ments across unre­lat­ed web­sites.

The Guide­line sets out how the indus­try should bal­ance adver­tis­er and user inter­ests when util­is­ing Third Par­ty OBA.

The sev­en prin­ci­ples of the Guideline
  • Third par­ties should not com­bine OBA data with per­son­al infor­ma­tion (as it is defined under the Pri­va­cy Act)
  • Pro­vi­sion of clear infor­ma­tion to web users by both the third par­ty col­lect­ing and using the OBA AND the web­site operator
  • The user must have a choice over OBA and the oppor­tu­ni­ty to opt out and in some cas­es require explic­it consent
  • Require­ment to keep the data secure: both brows­er safe­guards and storage
  • Care­ful han­dling of sen­si­tive seg­men­ta­tion (such as adver­tis­ing to children)
  • Edu­ca­tion of users of web­sites about OBA
  • Being held account­able for adher­ence to the Guide­line, includ­ing appli­ca­tion and eli­gi­bil­i­ty, com­pli­ance, val­i­da­tion and han­dling of con­sumer complaints

If you engage adver­tis­ing agen­cies or pur­chase adver­tis­ing on web­sites or con­tent aggre­ga­tors and require assis­tance with under­stand­ing how your busi­ness can com­ply with the Guide­line, please do not hes­i­tate to con­tact Swaab Attor­neys.