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Understanding the IAB TCF: A Guide for Publishers, Advertisers, and Ad Tech Companies

As more users realize what’s at stake if their information leaks, there’s a greater push for data privacy and security. For this reason, government regulators have implemented more explicit guidelines and restrictions for data collection, use, and storage.

Since its implementation in 2018, many aspects of the GDPR have changed. While it has been implemented throughout the European Union (EU), the European Commission has raised concerns regarding the emerging trends of divergence and fragmentation. It emphasizes that for GDPR to function optimally within the EU’s single market, member states must maintain alignment. Once the laws deviate, confusion and complication can arise. This is where the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s (IAB) Transparency and Consent Framework (TCF) comes into play.

What’s the IAB TCF?

Aiming to address all issues regarding data privacy implementation, the IAB developed the Transparency and Consent Framework. It is a set of technical specifications and policies allowing companies to obtain consent from individuals to use their personal data for advertising purposes.

The TCF provides a clear and concise way to obtain an individual’s consent to help organizations ensure they are lawfully processing personal data.

Take, for example, the GDPR and ePrivacy Directives. These policies are two of the most significant regulatory developments in recent years, which emphasize data privacy principles. Given these regulatory requirements, implementing the TCF is crucial for companies that operate in the ad tech space.

Recently, version 2.2 of the TCF introduced some changes and improvements to the framework. It aims to give users more clarity and control regarding using their personal data for advertising. It also addresses some of the challenges faced by previous versions of the TCF.

Participants in the TCF have been given a deadline until the end of the third quarter of 2023 to implement the required changes in their systems. The updates and modifications have been designed to ensure compatibility with the existing v2.1 Technical Specifications, minimizing any disruptions or significant alterations. This approach aims to support the smooth adoption of the new framework by consent management platforms (CMPs) and vendors within the given timeframe.

How does the TCF work?

When users visit a website or use an app that operates within the Transparency and Consent Framework, they are directed to a CMP. The CMP highlights the information about the data that will be collected. It also identifies the purposes for which it will be used and the third-party companies that will access it. The user then provides explicit consent for the use of their data.

Once the user has provided consent, the CMP sends a signal to relevant ad tech companies involved in serving ads to that user. The notification indicates the user’s consent preferences, which then informs these companies which data to collect and use.

Benefits of the TCF

The TCF offers several benefits to publishers, advertisers, and ad tech companies:

Promotes Compliance and Transparency

As mentioned, the TCF allows companies to comply with the GDPR and ePrivacy Directive by obtaining explicit user consent to use their data. Through it, users know the purpose and use of their provided information.
This helps companies avoid potential fines and legal action for non-compliance.

Improves Efficiency

The TCF enables companies to obtain user consent in a standardized and efficient manner. This reduces the burden on companies to create their own Consent Management Systems (CMSs) and ensures users have a consistent experience across different websites and apps.

Increases Flexibility

The TCF allows companies to tailor their consent management processes to their specific needs. This enables companies to provide users with relevant and meaningful consent options while ensuring compliance with data privacy laws.

How AlgoriX Elevates User Privacy

AlgoriX continues to ensure that users have control over their data. Our experts work tirelessly to update our technology and services to remain compliant with IAB TCF’s directives. We also constantly operate within the frameworks set by the industry to ensure compliance in various regions.

In fact, AlgoriX has joined IAB Europe’s TCF as part of our commitment to user privacy. Joining the TCF will allow us to expand our presence in the European market further and commit to global privacy and market transparency. As an active member of the IAB Tech Lab Global Privacy Working Group, we encourage ad tech organizations to evaluate the recent changes under the TCF v2.2 and prioritize them in their roadmap.

Learn more about AlgoriX and its commitment to user privacy protection. Connect with our experts today.



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Pranav Kataria

Senior Director, Programmatic Strategy

As the Associate Director of Programmatic Strategy, Pranav brings over 8 years of experience in the adtech industry working with Publishers, DSPs, Agencies, and Advertisers from global regions to improve their monetization, performance, and strategies. With great understanding of the mobile market, his expertise lies in analytics, account management, strategy, and ad sales. With this refined skill set, he brings customer-centric mindfulness that enables growth and innovation. Before joining AlgoriX, his keen business perspective and skills have earned him opportunities to work across different organizations and verticals in the advertising ecosystem; be it improving the processes, sales enablement, and managing client relationships.

Ray Xia

VP, AlgoriX Partner Studio

Ray Xia was a mainstay at Tencent Games, having worked at the company for 13 years. There, he took on various roles including backend developer, application development manager, and game producer. During this time, he actively participated in the development and operation of popular titles such as QQ Pet, QQ Pet Fight, and games involving the Naruto franchise. To date, these games have over 10 million daily active users. Through this rich well of experience he has accumulated covering all aspects of game development and operation, he aims to spearhead more creative endeavors via AlgoriX Studios.

Naomi Li

VP, Research and Development

Naomi Li has a decade’s worth of experience in research and development for the adtech industry. At present, she is responsible for the overall direction of AlgoriX’s R&D efforts, which include product planning, technical architecture design, and talent training.

Frederic Liow

Chief Revenue & Operations Officer

A veteran in the digital advertising industry, he began his career during the early days of the dotcom era. To date, his passion for the digital industry is still as strong as ever (and getting even stronger). Spanning twenty years of his digital career, he has worked for leading companies like Nielsen, MRM McCann, Omnicom Media Group, Millward Brown and Smaato. Currently, Frederic is the revenue officer for AlgoriX spearheading global revenue growth, business expansion and strategic partnerships. He has set up and built AlgoriX’s global mobile ad exchange, hiring talents, establishing best practices, and injecting global industry standards into the company. Prior to his current role, he was the Head of Demand for Smaato, overseeing the demand business and operations in APAC. Frederic is currently based in our Singapore HQ.

Xinxiao Guo

Chief Operation Officer

Equipped with a decade’s worth of experience in global product operation as well as a deep understanding of emerging markets, Xinxiao brings her expertise in mobile traffic monetization and programmatic advertising to the table. Before her role at AlgoriX, she was a core member of iQIYI’s research and development unit. After that, she moved to Baidu as Head of Programmatic Advertising.

At present, she is AlgoriX’s co-founder and Chief Operation Officer. Together with the team, she aims to help game developers effectively reach global audiences and implement better monetization strategies.

Ruiz Xie

Chief Executive Officer

With nearly 20 years of business experience, Ruiz Xie founded AlgoriX with the vision of creating a global advertising platform and entertainment ecosystem. Through AlgoriX’s services, he aims to create a more inclusive tech ecosystem by providing customized solutions that meet the needs of businesses at every stage. At the same time, through AlgoriX Studios and its third-party partner studios, the company is currently bringing to life a greater goal of providing a comprehensive entertainment platform for people worldwide, which covers games, IP, comics, movies, and more. At present, he leads nearly a hundred employees with concrete plans to expand the company by establishing more offices worldwide.