The ICO, the English authority for the protection of personal data, has outlined the challenges and problems of digital advertising, hoping for a synergy of operators for proposals focused on the interests, rights and freedoms of people in order to exit the current market of the omnipervasive tracking. Here are the possible scenarios.
The British authority for the protection of personal data, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), has outlined the challenges and problems of contemporary digital advertising, which should finally marry with the principles of privacy and data protection once it gets rid of cookies. third parties (market referred to by some as “cookieless”, which has already been discussed several times previously).
Nonetheless, the scenario does not appear peaceful at all, indeed the doubts about the various proposals and strategies – from Google and other operators of the advertising ecosystem – are more than plentiful; the ICO does not consider what is expected to be mature at all in order to claim to be able to leave behind us the “surveillance society”, built on the omnipresent tracking of marketing, for a company more respectful of the rights and freedoms of people related to their personal data.
This is what emerges from a recently published report in the form of an “opinion”, or “Data protection and privacy expectations for online advertising proposals” of last November 25th.
The authority wants to sensitize the market on the still critical points, especially after the monitoring of the issue in England had been formally “suspended” to give priority to the pandemic emergency, warning of the restart of analyzes and investigations as far as it is concerned – and not only that, given the synergy with the British DMA Antitrust, of which as many investigations and insights are already underway, not least a substantial consumer and competitive report on the sector.
Although Brexit is now complete, the Opinion is a document of strong interest for all subjects in the EU, considering that the ICO’s “filter” is still that of the GDPR and the ePrivacy Directive, at least until concrete reforms are implemented. of these regulations. The ICO remains a highly authoritative body that in the past has provided tools, guidelines, codes of conduct or similar information and operational supports of absolute value (think for example of the guides on DPIAs or the code for online activity towards minors), certainly shared by other continental authorities.
We would like to point out that this document constitutes a sort of update of the previous report of 2019, or “Update report into adtech and real time bidding”, which had already warned about sector practices, certainly not in line with privacy legislation. After the aforementioned pandemic halt, the ICO is picking up the thread also to take stock of what it had already feared almost three years ago.