Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Shopping online, privacy, data protection and third-party tracking

Date:
April 7, 2011
Source:
Inderscience Publishers
Summary:
In the wake of yet another e-commerce data breach in which the names and email addresses of millions of online shoppers and credit card users have been accessed illegally, researchers in the US suggest that privacy discussions, and ultimately legislation must urgently focus on the expanding roles of third-parties handling pervasive online customer profiles.

In the wake of yet another e-commerce data breach in which the names and email addresses of millions of online shoppers and credit card users have been accessed illegally, researchers in the US suggest that privacy discussions, and ultimately legislation must urgently focus on the expanding roles of third-parties handling pervasive online customer profiles.

Nancy King of the College of Business, at Oregon State University, in Corvallis, explains in the latest issue of the International Journal of Private Law that marketers have long created market segments in an effort to create more relevant advertising and efficiently spend advertising dollars. What has changed in recent years is that in the online world of e-commerce, tracking technologies allow advertisers to construct personal profiles and use them to individually target consumers much more effectively than ever before. As such, network advertising associations, the owners of consumer databases and data mining services and advertising exchanges are now playing a more and more important role in the online behavioral advertising industry. This paradigm shift in how we, as consumers, are marketed to should become high on the agenda in discussions of privacy in the European Union, the USA and elsewhere as legislation to cope with e-commerce is drafted.

Consumers do, to some extent, benefit from third parties generating a personal profile in that they are more likely to receive only targeted advertising that might be of genuine interest. Conversely, most consumers, given the choice, would prefer that their personal preferences for coffee brand, credit card and textured tissue paper were not made available to the whole marketing industry. Promoted "tweets" on Twitter, contextual AdSense advertising by Google, targeted Facebook advertisements generated using the data within your profile, and much more are already reality for internet users. King states that: "Online behavioral advertising 'offers the highest return on investment for dollars spent on e-advertising -- a value that is only diminished by the controversial nature of the tracking technology' that is used to produce the high returns."

In short, such profile-driven advertising exploits the consumer's interests and purchases in one area to sell them goods and services from another. Most consumers would prefer that not to happen. "There are significant data protection and other consumer privacy implications associated with participation by third-party businesses in the behavioral advertising industry," says King. There are technological tools to respond to this issue, such as ad-blocking software and anti-tracking tools for the web browser. Unfortunately, most consumers are unaware of the existence or need for these tools.

"As the behavioral advertising industry grows and consumers are increasingly being tracked, profiled and targeted for direct marketing communications by the industry, concerns about consumers' privacy and data protection have increased. It is short-sighted to limit privacy discussions to analysis of the primary participants in the industry, the advertisers and publishers, given the significant involvement of advertising network associations and other third-party businesses that support the industry," King says. "A key concern is data-sharing among these third-parties and the unlikelihood that consumers are aware of how their data is used by third-parties with which they do not directly interact, essentially a failure of transparency," she concludes.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Inderscience Publishers. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nancy J. King. Why privacy discussions about pervasive online customer profiling should focus on the expanding roles of third-parties. International Journal of Private Law, 2011; 4 (2): 193 DOI: 10.1504/IJPL.2011.039360

Cite This Page:

Inderscience Publishers. "Shopping online, privacy, data protection and third-party tracking." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110406161037.htm>.
Inderscience Publishers. (2011, April 7). Shopping online, privacy, data protection and third-party tracking. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110406161037.htm
Inderscience Publishers. "Shopping online, privacy, data protection and third-party tracking." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110406161037.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Science & Society News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) He is leading a one man agricultural revolution in Mali - Oumar Diatabe uses traditional farming methods to get the most out of his land and is teaching others across the country how to do the same. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) The World Health Organization has declared Nigeria free of Ebola. Health experts credit a bit of luck and the government's initial response. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 20, 2014) Forty-three people who had contact with Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S., were cleared overnight of twice-daily monitoring after 21 days of showing no symptoms. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins