IAB Tech Lab’s PETs

In plain words, Privacy Enhancing Technologies (or shortly, PETs) imply an ecosystem of IAB Tech Lab’s solutions, aimed at facilitating better protection of end user data privacy and fostering more secure data management in the digital advertising industry. 

The Story Behind

While IAB Tech Lab first announced its greater investment in the development of privacy-focused tech within its Project Rearc and outside of it quite a while ago, the launch of practical tools, helping digital ad companies sustain their business results, while keeping their customer data secure, often takes time. 

In particular, one of the cornerstone releases was definitely TCF 2.0, and among the latest ones from 2021, – the creation of a specific PET working group, whose members (cryptographers, data scientists, security system engineers, and more) will be focusing their efforts on resolving the issues related to advertising and online privacy, i.e. the development of the more sophisticated privacy-first ad tech.

Future Perspectives

As already forecasted, one of the long-awaited releases for 2022 is the official launch of the Global Privacy Platform, which should help simplify companies’ proof of compliance with various privacy regulations across the globe, but the list is much longer.

In particular, great expectations are being put on the upcoming release of  IAB Tech Lab’s Accountability Platform, or the finalized Seller Defined Audiences specification, just to name a few.

Nonetheless, in spite of the organization’s ambitious goals for the upcoming months, it’s hard to expect a wide adoption of newly-introduced solutions across the digital advertising landscape at least until 2023, or probably even later. 

The reasoning is simple: as with other tech novelties in the niche, the major businesses’ focus always remains on the balanced use of available operational resources to meet their revenue goals, while keeping up with their partners’ tech demands. 

And the current scope of the more urgent tasks, e.g. preparation for the CPRA, stricter tracking policies on iOS and Android, as well as the deprecation of third-party cookies, is so huge, that the priority of PET implementation may easily be downgraded.

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