Experts: What the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica issue may mean for digital

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“We will see a new balance form in which consumer privacy will be protected through ad transparency: Publishers will offer to shield the consumer’s true identity and attributes while delivering verification and transparency to the other constituency, the advertisers, by hashing identities (encrypting or transforming in a one-way direction),” said Victor Wong, CEO of Thunder Experience Cloud. “The Dream of the CDP (Customer Data Platform) Will Die: The CDP promised to offer advertisers a full view of the customer by collecting all the consumer’s data in one place. Now, however, walled gardens will most certainly not be sharing PII and user attributes with CDPs. CDPs can still collect data but they won’t be getting Facebook data even for their own customers – and this will drastically affect the value prop of the CDP.”

“The Cambridge Analytica news highlights the need for greater transparency and accountability, with the impetus on Facebook, brands and publishers to truly protect the privacy of their users. This should serve as a wake-up call for the entire industry to improve the consumer experience and it starts with making sure advertisers are safely reaching their intended audiences,” said Lauren Wiener, CEO, Tremor Video DSP.

“Some degree of privacy is given up for convenience and security – it’s how we can easily log into applications using Facebook to make our lives easier. For consumers, I do not see much changing. For many, convenience trumps privacy and consumers are not naïve to believe their data won’t be used in order to gain convenience. For publishers, they’ll walk a fine line between appeasing their shareholders and ensuring their data collection practices are transparent and not deceptive, likely to the point of over-communicating how and why data is used. With advertisers, I do not see too much changing as an individual’s digital footprint is already present. Those individuals who do not want advertisers to interact with them already implement ad blockers and, soon, erasure through GDPR,” said Rich Kahn, CEO and co-founder, eZanga.

“The Facebook-Cambridge Analytica breach comes at an interesting and most unfortunate time for the ad-tech industry. The general furor that behavioral targeting once generated has greatly diminished, with internet users having come to either (A) accept behavioral targeting as a “necessary evil” (e.g. “If I’m going to get ads anyway, I may as well get ads that are relevant to me”) or (B) avail themselves of the ad-blocking technologies and opt-out options that exist for those with stronger internet privacy concerns. However, this breach has refocused the spotlight squarely on the issue of internet privacy as it pertains to data collection, which we expect will produce renewed concern over the handling of PII as well as an increased focus on responsibly-sourced first-party data,” said Zack Cantor, Director, Decision Sciences, GlobalWide Media.

“The Cambridge Analytica issue is bad news for Facebook mainly because the data was misused specifically in support of Donald Trump’s polarizing election campaign and victory. The political dimension now makes it significantly more likely that Facebook will soon be regulated, whereas regulators had historically shown little interest in Facebook because it is demonstrably not a monopoly. Facebook’s brand is definitely tarnished, and advertisers do care about spending money with a tarnished brand, but the issue hasn’t actually affected Facebook’s user engagements metrics significantly. Facebook users may scream and shout, but apparently don’t care enough to actually stop using Facebook. Advertisers will get over it, and they will keep spending where they can most effectively reach targeted audiences for their products. Facebook will be slowed by regulation, but by far the biggest losers in this are the 3rd party developers whose businesses depended on the data that has now been completely cut off by Facebook,” Keith Sibson, Vice President, Product & Marketing, ‎PostUp

“Consumer privacy has been brought to the forefront of people’s minds due to the Cambridge Analytica news. The upside is this brings a fresh opportunity for smart tech companies to invest their time and money in making privacy a priority. Stronger privacy standards will help raise the bar for the entire industry and will shift the focus to what matters most – delivering a superior and safe experience for consumers and advertisers. Once the dust settles, we will see that tech companies focused on privacy will rise to the top in the industry,” Amit Dar, General Manager, US, Taptica.



Kristina Knight-1
Kristina Knight, Journalist , BA
Content Writer & Editor
Kristina Knight is a freelance writer with more than 15 years of experience writing on varied topics. Kristina’s focus for the past 10 years has been the small business, online marketing, and banking sectors, however, she keeps things interesting by writing about her experiences as an adoptive mom, parenting, and education issues. Kristina’s work has appeared with, NBC News,, DisasterNewsNetwork, and many more publications.