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BizReport : Advertising archives : January 25, 2018

Expert: Why marketers should double-down on privacy concerns

Privacy could be the word of the year for 2018. That, according to one expert who believes consumers' worry about data breaches and concerns about personal data will continue to grow throughout the year - especially where children are concerned.

by Kristina Knight

Kristina: How will privacy impact 2018?

Dylan Collins, CEO, SuperAwesome: We've already had a big year of privacy headlines and that is certainly going to continue, if not accelerate, in 2018. Why? The enforcement of the EU's General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) in May 2018 will herald more scrutiny than ever before of data collection practices on the internet, especially from kids websites and apps. Similarly, this year we saw the first class-action lawsuits in the U.S. regarding children's data privacy. Even though the U.S. Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) has been operational for many years, there will be even more pressure on global brands to have a water-tight approach to kids' data privacy. This will impact every corner of the kids industry - online publishers and video games; toy makers and their increasingly connected and online products; the big media companies and their growing number of streaming entertainment platforms. All of them will have to take a 'privacy by design and by default' approach to engage safely with kids in 2018.

Kristina: How can brands ensure they're utilizing the data they have without impinging on audience privacy?

Dylan: The whole kids digital ecosystem will become more reliant on partners and providers who adhere to the 'privacy by design and by default' philosophy. So, we advise kids' brands to check and recheck their partners in the delivery chain to ensure they are compliant and understand their responsibilities to this special (kids) audience. We also encourage brands to collect the minimum amount of data possible and to be cautious around the use of the data they have collected. This is an important operational shift because companies currently do the opposite and that just won't stick come May 2018.

Kristina: What should brands do to reassure consumers that their personal data is safe with that company?

Dylan: First, do the hard stuff and check the rigour of your internal operations and data management policies. Second, be transparent about the data you collect, where it goes and what it is used for - we can't stress enough the importance of a good and easy to understand privacy policy. Finally, be sure to follow both the letter and the spirit of the relevant laws and rules. For example, if you want to collect data from a U.S. audience of under-13s, you must obtain parental consent in the manner proscribed by the COPPA law.

Kristina: Huge data breaches are always a concern, but are there other data/privacy issues paramount in consumers' minds right now? How can marketers protect against a data breach?

Dylan: The more pressing question in the kids space is: do we really need all that data? The myriad of data points collected on adults is mind-boggling and it's used by companies for many reasons, including behavioral profiling. Our research shows that, on average, kids will have had 72M data points collected from them by the time they turn 13. Is this acceptable? No, and laws like GDPR and COPPA enforce that. We advocate for a zero-data internet for kids; a place that is safer for them to explore, create and learn in. And as for data breaches - if there is zero-data in the first place, that problem disappears.

Tags: advertising, advertising data, data privacy tips, digital privacy, privacy tips, SuperAwesome

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