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IAB demands higher standards from adtech ecosystem

IAB UK, the trade association for the digital advertising industry, yesterday announced a series of updates to the criteria that must be achieved to receive IAB UK Gold Standard certification.

IAB demands higher standards from adtech ecosystem
Kiessé Lamour: “These higher standards encourage companies to thoroughly review their processes and take action where required.”

Where previously companies needed only to be registered with JICWEBS and to complete an audit within six months, it is now a requirement that companies are fully certified under the JICWEBS Digital Trading Standards Group (DTSG) for Brand Safety before they can receive Gold Standard accreditation.

New thresholds have also been introduced for support of both ads.txt and the Coalition for Better Ads principles and the ‘Better Ads Standards’. It is now a requirement for both buy-side and sell-side platforms to ensure 90 percent of the traffic they deliver includes a valid ads.txt file. In addition, there is a new criterion to demonstrate a minimum of 99 percent of the domains platforms work with conform to the Coalition for Better Ads standards. Demonstration of how non-compliant inventory is filtered will need to be provided as part of the Gold Standard Certification audit.

Further updates include a requirement for companies to undergo IAB UK Gold Standard training, which the IAB will be supporting through the launch of a dedicated training platform, and for companies who trade in-app inventory to raise awareness and encourage adoption of the recently launched app-ads.txt protocol.

Commenting on the updated standards, Kiessé Lamour, Managing Partner, Digital Best Practice & Brand Safety, Omnicom Media Group UK, said: “We welcome the more stringent criteria required to receive the IAB UK Gold Standard certification. These higher standards encourage companies to thoroughly review their processes and take action where required, working with the IAB’s support, ensuring that we will continue to collectively improve the entire ecosystem for all stakeholders (consumers, publishers, brands, agencies, tech companies) against industry wide benchmarks. We are passionate advocates of the IAB UK Gold Standard and JICWEBS DTSG and Anti-Fraud initiatives and have started working actively with all of our partners to encourage them to become certified. We’re pleased to say that every company we have spoken to so far has now started the process.”

Tim Elkington, Chief Digital Officer, IAB UK, continued: “In its first year, the IAB UK Gold Standard has been embraced by every part of the digital advertising value chain, with over 100 companies registered or certified. However, to support a sustainable future for digital advertising, standards must continue to be raised and the progression to IAB UK Gold Standard 1.1 adds benchmarks that must now be achieved. Whilst I am confident the industry will rise to meet these new standards, it will be incumbent upon us all to ensure the IAB UK Gold Standard continues to evolve to meet the demands of this dynamic industry.”

The IAB UK Gold Standard aims to drive up standards in the digital advertising industry, by encouraging companies to commit to best practices that reduce ad fraud, increase brand safety and improve digital advertising experiences for users. Compliance criteria are tailored to each part of the value chain and companies who are successfully certified commit to upholding these best practice guidelines.

To support its members’ transition to the new certification requirements, IAB UK is investing in its first dedicated Standards Manager, who will be responsible for driving these quality thresholds throughout the UK digital advertising industry.

Companies who have already achieved current IAB UK Gold Standard certification will be supported through their transition to the new standards.

Companies Currently Certified for IAB UK Gold Standard: AdColony, Adform, Adverty, ADYOULIKE, Amazon Advertising, AppNexus, AutoTrader, Bauer Media UK, Blis, Cadreon, Captify Technologies Limited, Coull, Crimtan, Encore Digital Media, ESI Media, Exponential, Facebook, Gameloft, Global Blue, Google YouTube, Google AdX, GroupM Digital Programmatic Services, GumGum, Haymarket Automotive, Hearst UK, Immediate Media, Index Exchange, Inskin Media, Instagram , iotec Global, IPG Mediabrands, Mail Metro Media, Mapp Media, MC&C Media, MediaCom North, MiQ, Mobsta Ltd, Nano Interactive, News UK, Oath, Oath DSP, Oath Native Marketplace, Ogury, Omnicom Media Group UK, OpenX, Perform Media, Playbuzz, Precise TV, Publicis Media, Quantcast, Reach, Rubicon Project, Samsung Ads, Sharethrough, Sovrn, Spiritmedia Scotland, Spotify, Sublime, TAN Media, Teads, Telegraph Media, the7stars, The Guardian, The Student Room, Flowplayer, TI Media, Total Media, TripAdvisor, TripleLift, Unruly, Venatus Media, Vevo, Xaxis