Online advertisers are getting better at identifying you
Richard Watson-Bruhn, the US Head of Digital Trust and Cybersecurity at PA Consulting, discusses privacy concerns with targeted advertising.
The article notes that targeted advertising is becoming increasingly effective, which is why you may be bombarded with ads for a product within minutes after searching its category online. To some, it’s merely creepy but to others it can pose an invasion of privacy.
According to the online publication The Markup, advertisers are getting highly personal. Its analysis of 650,000 audience segments shows advertisers could, if they wanted to, identify you as a “heavy purchaser” of pregnancy test kits and target you with ads accordingly.
Privacy experts say as online advertising becomes increasingly granular consumers’ privacy is at risk.
Richard said: “There have been examples of privacy harms from data gathering and targeting of advertising over decades, a classic example being unrequested coupons for expectant mothers based on spending habits inadvertently informing other household members. The challenge is a balance of the privacy harms and expectations of a consumer with a consistent desire many of us have for personalized experiences and offers.”
Experts agree that consumers need to be aware of the dangers of revealing too much personal health data online.