This Privacy Policy describes, in Plain English, the steps taken by AdTheorent, Inc. to safeguard the privacy rights of Web site visitors who receive mobile advertisements through publishers and media supported by our Mobile Demand-Side Platform (MDSP) and related services (Users). In our pursuit of these business objectives we adhere to the fundamental principles of transparency, user control and data security.  AdTheorent is a member of the Internet Advertising Bureau and adheres to the IAB/DAA’s Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising, including unique principles applicable to the mobile environment.

This Privacy Policy describes the types of data that we do and do not receive through our MDSP, and the services we provide to our clients generally.  This Privacy Policy is subject to change from time to time, in which case we will post an updated version on the Privacy section of our Web site.  Changes to this Privacy Policy will take effect 30-days after the updated Privacy Policy is posted to our Web site’s privacy page, located at www.adtheorent.com/privacy-policy.

Who We Are

AdTheorent, Inc. is a privately held digital ad network and MDSP which uses machine learning, data science and related technology to assist advertisers and advertising agencies in their efforts to deliver targeted and useful digital advertisements to consumers.  We purchase media (in real time) from our inventory sources (consisting of app or web publishers or the advertising exchanges which make their digital ad inventory available for purchase (Inventory Partners)), and we serve mobile advertisements through such media on behalf of our advertiser clients in an intelligent manner.  AdTheorent predictive models help AdTheorent determine which advertising “impressions” (meaning, User web page or app visits) are most likely to yield engagement and interest on the part of the User.  AdTheorent models utilize the data made available to AdTheorent from its Inventory Parters, as described below.

We Do Not Collect Sensitive Personally Identifiable Information or Sensitive Consumer Information

We do not collect Sensitive Personally Identifiable Information (“SPII”) or Sensitive Consumer Information (“SCI”) about individual Users for any purpose.  In other words, our MDSP does not use SPII or SCI to target ads to individual Users.  For purposes of this Privacy Policy, (i) SPII means any information that could be used to personally identify the User, such as the User’s name, Social Security Number, phone number (fixed or mobile), email address, credit card information, or any other data that could be used to personally identify the User; and (ii) SCI means sensitive information about a User such as financial account numbers, insurance plan numbers, or protected health information (PHI) as that term is defined under the HIPAA Privacy Rule.  AdTheorent does store data that, in conjunction with other publicly accessible data, could be considered non-sensitive PII, such as IP Address, Cookie Ids and Device Advertising Ids (i.e., “non-sensitive PII”).  This data is stored separately and role-based access controls are in place which limit the linking or correlation of such data elements, and the Company does not use this data to seek to distinguish or trace an individual’s identity.

The Cookie IDs and advertising IDs maintained and stored by the Company are used for re-targeting and frequency-capping purposes.  In some cases such IDs are tied to web browsing history.

To the extent any of our Partners (as defined below) gather and form of PII, their privacy policies will govern its use.

For purposes of this Privacy Policy SPII and SCI are referred to collectively as SPII and non-sensitive PII is referred to as PII.  In addition, to the extent any of our Partners gather PII, we do not aggregate such information in a manner that could be used to identify any User.  For example, in some instances we cross-reference non-sensitive PII information with a “hashed” version (i.e., a coded version) of a corresponding physical address or email address.  We do this to provide more transparency to advertisers regarding the users who engaged with their ads and to provide more effective targeting (including in some cases identifying which devices correspond to the same unidentified User), and although we maintain statistical and aggregate information about such Users, we do not create profiles of specific Users for any purpose.

How We Use Non-Sensitive PII Data and Other Data To Make Advertisements More Relevant to Users

When we serve mobile advertisements on behalf of our advertiser clients we endeavor to make the ads relevant to Users.  We accomplish this by matching ads with relevant non-sensitive PII and other characteristics about the device and the mobile publication that the User has visited, such as the time of day and date, content on the site or app, latitude/longitude of User, other devices associated with the User, carrier network, type of mobile device/mobile browser, IP address, as well as other non-sensitive PII data provided through our Partners. In other words, although we may serve an ad to a User based on certain demographic information about the Users (e.g., female in New York between the ages of 35 and 50), our MDSP does not know – nor do we seek to know – who that User is, or any information that would allow us to identify who the User is.

Currently we receive certain device IDs (Android Advertising ID, Apple IDFA) in some cases to verify a User election, such as a User-requested app install request. In those cases we obtain the device ID not to track the User, but rather to substantiate for our advertiser clients whether the User installed the app.

In order to ensure the geographic relevance of ads that we serve and to identify correlations between disparate devices, we derive User device location data from information made available to us from Inventory Partners and data partners, as follows:

  • We gather device latitude/longitude data from bid requests which we are provided access by our Inventory Partners.  We translate the latitude/longitude provided into a physical street address (a process which we refer to as “reverse geocoding”).
  • We use models (along with frequency and temporal proximity) to identify the physical address (i.e., household address) which corresponds to the device.
  • We also use models to identify the IP address corresponding to a given physical address.
  • Once we know the household or other physical location with respect to which a device is associated, we can group specific devices up into a “household” or other physical location.
  • Using the geographic data, we can target devices associated with the “household” (i.e., correlated devices).
  • Derived physical addresses are also used to match an advertiser’s internal datasets to devices within our ecosystem. This allows AdTheorent to target ads to devices that are associated with customers of our advertiser clients (although AdTheorent does not ever learn or receive access to the name or identity of any User).

We will not use a User’s current GPS geographic location to target an ad unless we or one of our data or inventory Partners have previously obtained permission to do so. Because we do not have a nexus with a User before the User generates a specific bid request, we rely on our inventory partners to adhere to contractual requirements and applicable regulatory and self-regulatory guidelines, including any requirements related to obtaining User consent to access the User’s geographic location.

If we intend to obtain or use this information in the future we will update our Privacy Policy accordingly, as described above, to clearly delineate a User’s rights; provided, however, that any User is free to Opt Out of any such future practice or use of User-specific behavioral, geocoding or interest-based targeted advertising by clicking here.  In addition, more information about opting out of interest-based advertising is available on the opt-out pages maintained by the Network Advertising Initiative (“NAI”) (currently located at http://www.networkadvertising.org/choices/) or the Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA) (currently located at http://www.aboutads.info/choices/).

Through our MDSP, we work with a broad network of publishers, Inventory Partners, carriers, networks and advertisers (“Partners”). Our Partners may have certain rights to the data we collect on their behalf, and each of our Partners maintains its own privacy policy.

We may share aggregated data, or non-personal data with third parties and we may share Non-Sensitive PII Data with our advertiser and agency clients who hire us to run their campaigns.

How We Collect Non-Sensitive PII and Other Data

We collect non-sensitive PII and other data both from our Partners and by looking at the non-sensitive PII and other information that comes to our servers from a User’s device, such as a mobile phone. This information enables our MDSP to deliver the most relevant and useful advertisement given the non-PII data available about the media “impression.” We currently do not store any cookies on User devices to identify any User. We do store cookies on User devices in order to anonymously identify one device from another. The ID stored in the cookie is an anonymous unique ID (AUID).

AdTheorent and its Partners may use non-cookie technologies to recognize a User’s computer or device and/or to collect and record information about the User. A User’s web browser may not permit the User to block the use of these non-cookie technologies, and those browser settings that block cookies may have no effect on such techniques.

To learn more about Interest-Based Advertising or to opt-out of this type of advertising by those third parties that are members of self-regulatory programs such as the Network Advertising Initiative, please visit the NAI’s website (www.networkadvertising.org) which will allow you to opt out of Interest-Based Advertising by one, or all, NAI members.

How We Comply with Self Regulatory Requirements Related to Precise Location Data

AdTheorent adheres to the requirements of the NAI Code of Conduct related to the collection and use of Precise Location Data, consistent with NAI guidance submitted on the NAI blog on April 1, 2016. As a third-party ad network, AdTheorent complies through its adherence to the requirements of the Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA) Mobile Guidance, Section IV.B.2, which provides a number of methods for third party ad networks to obtain reasonable assurances that a first party publisher, such as a mobile application, has obtained such consent on their behalf.  Such methods include: (i) entering into a contract with the first party publisher under which the first party agrees to obtain consent to the third party’s data collection and use, (ii) obtaining other written assurances from the first party publisher to the same effect; (iii) verifying that the first party publisher publicly represents that it adheres to industry Self-Regulatory Principles; (iv) verifying that the first party obtains consent to the collection of Precise Location Data and provides clear, meaningful, and prominent notice that such data may be transferred to third parties; and/or (v) verifying that the first party participates in a mechanism offered by a platform or operating system that provides the ability to obtain consent that satisfies this Principle.

How We Safeguard the Security of Aggregate User Data

All the data we hold is protected by multiple layers of physical, electronic and administrative safeguards, to secure it against accidental, unauthorized or unlawful access, use, modification, disclosure, loss or destruction.

From time-to-time we may share the aggregated, non-individual specific, data we hold with Publishers and Networks for reporting and accounting purposes, as well as other unaffiliated third parties for various purposes such as statistical or educational analysis.  In these cases we work with organizations we believe to have appropriate safeguards in place to protect data at the levels we require.  In situations where we are obligated by law, we may also disclose information in order to investigate, prevent or take action regarding suspected or actual prohibited activities, included but not limited to, fraud and situations involving potential threats to the physical safety of any person.

How We Meet Our Obligations Under Laws, Regulations and Standards Intended to Safeguard Children

AdTheorent takes various steps to ensure compliance with the federal Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) as well as voluntary industry frameworks such as the Children’s Advertising Review Unit (CARU), administered by the Council of Better Business Bureau’s, Inc., including the following:

  • We do not perform behavioral targeting as performed by many “first generation” ad networks; AdTheorent predictive modeling does not entail targeting of individual users.
  • We do not store data regarding users under age 13 (per COPPA); when an impression is flagged indicating a pre-13 child user, AdTheorent does not collect data from that impression or otherwise model off that data.
  • We work with responsible Publishers and App Partners who take seriously their responsibilities under applicable laws and FTC regulations.  Such publishers have their own incentives not to make COPPA-governed data/information available to ad networks such as AdTheorent.
  • We utilize IAB brand safety categories in filtering impressions on which to serve advertisements, including filtering by the IAB category “any other content you wouldn’t show your children.”
  • Our in-house creative team monitors and ensures that all AdTheorent-prepared creative is consistent with the CARU General Guidelines, available here.
  • We make an effort to work with established brands with an appreciation for and understanding of the importance of CARU’s standards.
  • We also take precautions to also not collect data from apps or sites that are clearly targeted towards children under age 13, regardless of whether bid data identifies the User as under age 13.

Data Retention Period

AdTheorent maintains data related to media served for a period of 12 months past date of collection.

AdTheorent Data Protection Officer & Compliance Team

AdTheorent has appointed a Data Protection Officer who oversees AdTheorent’s technical infrastructure and process as such relate to privacy and data security matters.  AdTheorent’s Data Protection Officer also participates as a member of the AdTheorent Privacy Task Force, which group is comprised of AdTheorent leadership individuals responsible for implementing and executing on the requirements described in this Policy.  AdTheorent’s Data Protection Officer is reachable as described below under “Contact Us for More Information.”

How We Meet Our Obligations Under the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and ePrivacy Directive

AdTheorent’s business focus is the United States market and most of our business activities to date relate to purchasing media impressions correlated to Users within the United States, but from time to time we also provide services to our clients related to international advertising campaigns, including campaigns in the European Union (the “EU”), in which case we may purchase digital media impressions and deliver digital ads to Users located in the EU.  In such cases AdTheorent adheres to protocols, standards and rules described in the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) and ePrivacy Directive, as summarized below.

AdTheorent’s ‘Legal Basis’ to Process and Use Personal Data

The GDPR itself does not require consent to be able to process a User’s personal data for online advertising. Rather, it requires that any company that “processes” data must have a “legal basis” to do so. Under the GDPR, “processing” is defined broadly to include virtually any automated process that touches data — including, for example, us receiving data in bid requests from our inventory Partners. GDPR allows companies to process personal data to further its own “legitimate interests” or those of a third party, as long as doing so won’t adversely infringe on the rights and freedoms of the User. We rely on this legal basis for our processing activities, as well as User consent when available.

The Article 29 Data Protection Working Party (an independent advisory body made up of representatives of the national data protection authorities, the European Commission and the European Data Protection Supervisor), Opinion 06/2014, notes that retailers/advertisers have a legitimate interest in getting to know their customers’ preferences and marketing to them.  While recognizing this legitimate interest, AdTheorent is also sensitive to the potential negative consequences for Users resulting from intrusions to their privacy.  As a result, AdTheorent takes various affirmative steps to limit the types of Personal Data that is receives, to de-identify data and to use data in aggregated methods when possible.

AdTheorent Inventory Partners’ Legal Basis Under GDPR

AdTheorent has no direct relationship with Users in order to obtain affirmative consent.  However, AdTheorent’s contractual arrangements with EU suppliers and Partners ensure that such Partners will not provide Personal Data about EU data subjects unless the Partner either: (i) obtains and manages opt-in consents from such EU data subjects; or (ii) identifies an alternative ‘legal basis” permitted under GDPR.

AdTheorent Approach: Consent & De-Identification

Currently, AdTheorent adheres to an internal best practice that unless Personal Data is provided to AdTheorent’s MDSP from inventory Partners with Consent as the legal basis for processing, AdTheorent will de-identify Personal Data originating from EU countries.  As a result, in the absence of User consent, AdTheorent will not store any User Personal Data, as defined by GDPR.  Simply stated, for all bid requests originating from countries that fall under GDPR, if User consent is not communicated as having been provided AdTheorent will adhere to the following process:

  • Remove the last Octet of the IP Address.  This eliminates the ability to isolate that IP address to a given device or location.
  • Replace the Advertising ID (Android Advertising Id or Apples ID for Advertising) with all zeros.  This eliminates the ability to track the activity of the particular device.
  • Round the Latitude/Longitude data to two decimal places.  This eliminates the ability to determine the location of the device below the city level.
  • Do not set a cookie on the device.  This eliminates the ability to track the browsing activity of the device or share the device info with any other data partners.

As a result of these methods AdTheorent does not maintain any Personal Data related to any identified or identifiable natural person (data subject) in the EU, as defined in GDPR, unless that person has provided consent to AdTheorent’s Partner and such consent is communicated to AdTheorent.

IAB EU Consent Framework

AdTheorent has registered as a global vendor with the IAB EU Consent framework.  This framework facilitates the communication and management of User consents within the context of the digital advertising ecosystem in which publishers work with numerous vendors to deliver targeted advertisements.

More information about the IAB EU Consent framework is here.

As a result of AdTheorent’s registering and implementing the IAB EU Consent Framework, publisher Partners are able to include AdTheorent in their respective consent forms and processes.  Simply stated, AdTheorent will be included in the publishers’ list of advertising partners for whom User consent is requested.  This implementation allows users to opt-in to all or individual vendors.

“Profiling” Under GDPR

GDPR contains certain rules related to “profiling,” which is the automated processing of Personal Data for the purpose of evaluating, analyzing or predicting a data subject’s interests, location, or preferences.  This includes the collection or use of personal data over time to deliver users with targeted ads.  AdTheorent generates automated predictive models for the purpose of identifying Users who would be most interested in engaging with a given type of digital advertisement. As such, we do engage in “profiling.” That being said, GDPR only requires opt-in consent for profiling that produces a “legal effect” or which “significantly affects” an end user (for example, an automated decision to deny someone credit on the basis of a profile). Targeting through our platform only controls the type of advertisement that an end user might see, and does not produce a legal or significant effect. As such, any profiling associated with our platform and services does not require opt-in consent. In fact, the GDPR expressly acknowledges that ‘ordinary’ profiling can be conducted on the basis of legitimate interests.

If you would like to Opt Out of automated profiling on our network, please click here.

The Data We Collect – AdTheorent’s Digital Supply Chain – and the Purpose for Collection

As noted above, AdTheorent minimizes the extent to which it obtains and uses Personal Data to the minimum data attributes needed to provide relevant and useful digital advertisements to Users on behalf of AdTheorent’s advertiser clients.  We use the Personal Data to generate predictive models and to determine which Users are most likely to engage with given advertisements, and then we target those Users on digital properties which have integrated with our Partner digital advertising exchanges and other inventory partners.  Currently the only Personal Data elements that we receive related to EU Users as part of our services on EU advertising campaigns is limited to: (i) User IP address; (ii) User Advertising ID (Android Advertising Id or Apples ID for Advertising); (iii) User cookie IDs; and (iv) User latitude/longitude data corresponding to User’s geographic location at time advertising impression is provided to AdTheorent.

Under no circumstances will AdTheorent use or store the special categories of data referenced in Article 9 of GDPR.  Such special categories include personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade union membership, genetic data, biometric data for the purpose of uniquely identifying a natural person, data concerning health or data concerning a natural person’s sex life or sexual orientation.

AdTheorent also will not engage in the household device correlation measures described above, which process is not used for any campaign governed by GDPR.

AdTheorent Privacy Rights Infrastructure

As noted above, AdTheorent obtains limited Personal Data elements to provide its services, and AdTheorent will retain such Personal Data only for data subjects who have provided consent for such use.  No Personal Data is retained or stored by AdTheorent related to data subjects who have not previously provided consent.  With respect to data subjects who have provided consent, AdTheorent will use Personal Data elements for the limited purposes described in this Policy.

If any data subject or User desires to obtain access to the Personal Data or request that AdTheorent erase or correct such Personal Data, or otherwise object to such collection, AdTheorent will accommodate such request(s) through processes managed by its Data Privacy Officer, whose contact information is below.  AdTheorent is also working to create an automated on-line form to assist in the processing of these requests, which will be provided as an update to this Policy.

Summary of Your Rights

  • You have the right to file a complaint with a supervisory authority, which you may direct to our Data Protection Officer as described below.
  • You have the right to request what Personal Information we retain about you, and the right to request erasure of such Personal Information.
  • You have the right to request updates or corrections to any Personal Data that we store about you, after which we will provide confirmation of what information was updated or what corrections were made.
  • You have the right to opt-out of automated profiling on our network, as described above.

Applicability of ePrivacy Directive

Independent of GDPR, the EU ePrivacy Directive (and the new ePrivacy Regulation that is currently being negotiated) independently requires consent for AdTheorent’s Partners (and publishers generally) to be able to place cookies or otherwise access a User’s device. This type of consent, which is currently generally obtained through “cookie banners”, is still required despite GDPR. AdTheorent, like other ad tech companies, are not able to obtain this consent independently, so our contracts with Inventory Partners ensure that they obtain this consent (directly or through their participating publishers) on our behalf.

Special Considerations Applicable to Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Campaigns

In addition to the above safeguards and processes, AdTheorent adheres to additional rules and best practices related to digital advertising in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries.  As noted above, AdTheorent does not obtain and therefore will not use (for any purpose, including but not limited to ad targeting or the development or refinement of predictive models) any Private Health Information (PHI) about any individual as that term is used under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the HIPAA Privacy Rule thereunder.  AdTheorent healthcare and pharmaceutical campaigns may utilize contextual targeting techniques which may include geographic targeting and site-based targeting, and AdTheorent predictive models may be employed without using any PHI or Sensitive PII.  To the extent AdTheorent leverages third party data to inform its predictive models and targeting strategies, such third parties do not provide or use PHI or Sensitive PII and AdTheorent will never receive or use PHI or Sensitive PII from such third parties.  Rather, such third parties use aggregated metrics and de-identified data only.

Special Considerations Applicable to Financial Services Campaigns

In addition to the above safeguards and processes, AdTheorent adheres to additional rules and best practices related to digital advertising in the financial services industry.  As noted above, AdTheorent does not obtain and therefore will not use (for any purpose, including but not limited to ad targeting or the development or refinement of predictive models) any Sensitive PII about any individual.  AdTheorent financial services campaigns may utilize contextual targeting techniques which may include geographic targeting and site-based targeting, and AdTheorent predictive models may be employed without using any Sensitive PII.  With respect to the predictive models and targeting strategies deployed and used for financial services campaigns, such models and targeting strategies will not use Sensitive PII and AdTheorent will not develop or use models or targeting strategies based on any “prohibited criteria” for purposes of the Equal Credit Reporting Act or Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Contact Us for Further Information

If you have any questions about this Policy or our privacy practices, please email us at either or both of these addresses:

AdTheorent Data Protection Officer:

dataprotection@adtheorent.com

AdTheorent Legal:

legal@adtheorent.com

This Privacy Policy was last updated May 24, 2018.