DigiTrust is a non-profit, industry-wide collaboration of companies building and supporting technology solutions that improve the digital experience for consumer, publishers, advertisers and third-parties. As a first order of business, the consortium is offering a standardized user token in order to improve the consumer online experience. The DigiTrust technology solution creates the anonymous user token, which is propagated by and between its members in lieu of billions of proprietary pixels and trackers on Web pages daily.
DigiTrust seeks to dramatically reduce the number of third-party requests that take place on Web pages, and which slow down the consumer online experience.
Thousands of companies work in collaboration today to deliver to consumers personalized digital content and advertising over the Web, across many different devices. Each of these companies assigns their own proprietary, cookie-based user token, which their partners aren’t able to read. That means in order to work together in real-time, each company must maintain elaborate systems and processes to track the different anonymous token used by each of their partners, for each consumer, on each Web browser in every connected device. The conventional process to update those systems and synchronize tokens with each other is called “pixel syncing” or “ID syncing”, and this process — because it’s so widely deployed across so many companies — can easily result in more than 100 third-party requests on a given Web page. This slows down the Web experience publishers offer their consumer audiences, and is costly for third party companies to maintain.
DigiTrust offers its members a software-as-a-service (SaaS) technology solution that, upon consumer notice and consent, creates an anonymous user token and stores it within a conventional cookie that may be read and propagated by DigiTrust members. With a standardized token provided to and used by all parties, pixel syncs are rendered obsolete. Hundreds of billions of unnecessary daily third party pixel sync requests will eventually be removed from Web pages — improving the Web experience for consumers — while publishers and their partners are still able to work together to deliver consumers the same rich personalized content and advertising.
DigiTrust has provided publishers with an open-source JavaScript file to run on all their pages, which they may serve from their domain. The job of this script is to: (1) provide consumer notice and achieve consent (where necessary), (2) generate the standardized (randomly generated) user token and store it as a conventional cookie (along with a timestamp for when consumer notice/consent was achieved, where necessary), then subsequently (3) allow the encrypted token and timestamp to be read and used by DigiTrust members, but only if the consumer has not opted out.
Most companies in the industry already use proprietary cookie-based user tokens for behavioral data collection and targeting, and are covered under existing privacy/regulatory guidelines. Their use of the DigiTrust token is not expected to impact their current data collection practices nor privacy/regulatory compliance. DigiTrust enables no new data for collection and/or subsequent targeting by any party. The primary goal for DigiTrust is to reduce the need for third-party requests on publisher pages as a result of pixel syncs, which slow down the consumer experience.
Standardization of the user token, with their consent, will enable online consumers to be encumbered by substantially fewer third party requests on the pages they visit across the Web, resulting in a faster and more trusted online experience, while fully preserving the privacy choices available to them today.
Standardization of the user token enables online publishers to substantially reduce the number of third party requests on their pages, resulting in a better Web experience for their visitors, more trusted and effective integrations with their third party partners, and in some jurisdictions alleviated regulatory pressure. It also enables significantly greater audience recognition for advertisers, which results in more revenue, while simultaneously reducing data leakage.
Standardization of the user token will enable third parties to integrate with each other (on behalf of their publisher or marketer customers) much more easily, with better audience recognition, faster integration time, reduced operational costs, improved delivery of services to their customers, and in some jurisdictions alleviated regulatory pressure.
Standardization of the user token, with consumer notice and consent, will enable marketers to integrate with technology platforms more easily, with faster integration time and improved audience recognition, measurement, etc. Accordingly, marketers will be able to reach targeted audiences at greater scale, across a broader set of platforms and devices, with reduced operational costs.
Standardization of the user token, with their consent, will enable online consumers to be encumbered by substantially fewer third party requests on the pages they visit across the Web, which helps to reduce consumer privacy concerns. Other than that, there is no impact to consumer privacy. The DigiTrust service generates no incremental tracking data of any sort, and relies on conventional cookies, which are broadly used on the Web today already. DigiTrust also fully preserves/respects the privacy options available to and used by consumers today.
Respecting consumer privacy choices is of paramount importance. DigiTrust chooses to support the opt-out programs broadly available to and used by consumers already, rather than creating a new or different opt-out. A consumer opt-out through any of these existing programs will result in the opt-out flag within the DigiTrust service to be set for that user. Thereafter, that user token will not be shared with any party.
DigiTrust is a membership based industry consortium with two levels of membership – general and supporting. Advertising technology platforms (such as SSPs, exchanges, DSPs, DMPs, etc.) may join as General Members, while licensees of those platforms with a first party relationship to consumers (primarily online publishers, but may also include marketers) may join as Supporting Members. Only members in good standing, who comply with consumer privacy guidelines, may utilize the DigiTrust standardized token.
No, DigiTrust does not inherently support any of the Do Not Track proposals, though does not interfere with any member company’s choice and ability to do so.
DigiTrust does not serve ads, and therefore isn’t affected by software installed to block ads. DigiTrust merely issues a standardized token for the industry to use, once consumer notice and consent has been achieved. We expect ad blockers to refrain from blocking the cookie notice windows (or any consumer disclosures) required of publishers for regulatory compliance reasons.