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ICO publishes update report on use of personal data by adtech sector


The UK’s Information Commissioners Office (ICO) has published its update report into adtech and real-time bidding (RTB). 

The update clarifies the ICO’s views on adtech, specifically the use of personal data in RTB, and its intended next steps. It found that although many RTB players impose some controls on the processing and sharing of data, there are significantly different levels of engagement and understanding of how data protection law applies. 

The ICO’s initial investigations have raised several concerns with RTB data protection practices, with the ICO prioritising the areas of transparency & control, and the data supply chain. It found that methods of obtaining consent for the processing of personal data in RTB are often insufficient in respect of data protection law requirements; and that privacy notices issued to individuals lack clarity and fail to provide full visibility of what happens to their data. The ICO also found that the scale of the creation and sharing of personal data profiles in RTB is disproportionate, unfair and intrusive, especially as in many cases people are not aware that their personal data is being processed.

In response, the Open Rights Group (ORG) called on the ICO to take immediate action against companies that are unlawfully processing personal data. It expressed concern that the ICO was proceeding very slowly and cautiously, despite agreeing in substance with a complaint filed by the ORG ad Dr Michael Veale about the insecurity of adtech data sharing. 

Source: Ico Search Results