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For information about Google ad and content network privacy, please see the following information about Google and the Google Privacy & Terms formerly described as the DoubleClick DART cookie:
DoubleClick, founded in 1995, was a company acquired by Google in 2008 which developed and provided Internet ad serving services.
Google announced on April 13, 2007 a definitive agreement was completed to acquire DoubleClick for US $3.1 billion in cash. The deal raised concerns surrounding competition with both the FTC and the European Union. In May 2007, the FTC requested additional information about the deal after it was urged by competitors, including Microsoft, who believed it would give Google too much control over online advertising. On December 20, 2007, the FTC approved Google’s purchase of DoubleClick from its owners Hellman & Friedman and JMI Equity, saying, “after carefully reviewing the evidence, we have concluded that Google’s proposed acquisition of DoubleClick is unlikely to substantially lessen competition.” European Union regulators granted approval on March 11, 2008, and Google completed the acquisition later that day.
AdChoices is a self-regulatory program for online interest-based advertising that exists in the United States, Canada and across Europe. The program calls for advertising companies to establish and enforce responsible privacy practices for interest-based advertising, aimed to give consumers enhanced transparency and control. Companies adhere to a set of principles that are enforced by accountability programs.
“Interest-based advertising” (also known as “online behavioral advertising” or “behavioral targeting”) selectively displays ads based on browsing history, primarily using cookies, to users most likely to identify with and respond to the ad’s specific content. The AdChoices icon (a triangle) is shown automatically by companies part of the self-regulatory program, and is meant to indicate to consumers when interest-based advertising data is being collected or used. By clicking on the icon (which is usually found in the top right corner of an online advertisement), a consumer can learn more about the ad or a website’s collection practices, and be provided with the ability to opt-out of such targeting.
Although it is possible to opt out of interest-based advertising through the AdChoices program(s), opting out does not block advertisements nor prevent tracking of web browsing history by use of other ways (e.g. Flash cookies). The US and Canadian AdChoices programs require that participating companies not use Flash cookies or similar locally shared objects for online interest-based advertising purposes.
Flash Cookies, also known as a Local Shared Object (LSO), is a piece of data that websites which use Adobe Flash may store on a user’s computer. Local shared objects have been used by all versions of Flash Player (developed by Macromedia, which was later acquired by Adobe Systems) since version 6.
Flash cookies, which can be stored or retrieved whenever a user accesses a page containing a Flash application, are a form of local storage. Similar to that of cookies, Flash Cookies can be used to store user preferences, save data from Flash games, or to track users’ Internet activity. Flash Cookies or LSOs have been criticized as a breach of browser security, but there are now browser settings and add-ons to limit the duration of their storage. In July 2017, Adobe announced the upcoming ending to support for Flash and their Flash Player (late 2020). Adobe continued to encourage the use of open HTML5 standards in place of Flash.
In July 2013, additional principles were launched by the DAA to address interest-based data collected from smartphones and tablets. Consumers were offered a choice mechanism for the mobile environment in February 2015, when the DAA officially launched AppChoices, an opt-out app for mobile devices.
In September 2013, the Canadian version of the AdChoices program was launched by the Digital Advertising Alliance of Canada (DAAC), composed of a similar set of marketing and communications trade associations compared to the United States associations. The Canadian version addressed the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC)’s guidelines for online behavioral advertising. The AdChoices program can be implemented in a manner consistent with existing Canadian privacy laws and the OPC’s guidelines for online interest-based advertising.
The AdChoices self-regulatory programs have over 200 participants. The business participants include AOL, AT&T, Bloomberg, Comcast, Conde Nast, Dow Jones, Facebook, General Motors, Google Inc., Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, Taboola, Yahoo!, and many more.
Former language used in 2009
Google’s use of the DART cookie enables it to serve ads to your users based on their visit to your sites and other sites on the Internet.