Advertising attribution + security + privacy: built-in by design

By John Koetsier September 13, 2019

Every day, we’re bombarded with stories about data breaches, successful hacks, and privacy violations. The world of advertising attribution is not immune to any of those.

Just in 2019, there have been 63 breaches exposing 100 million records in the fintech sector alone, according to the Identity Theft Center. Plus 363 in the medical field and 59 in government/military. Add in all the other sectors, and there have been over 1,000 breaches exposing data on over 146 million records … just this year.

Short version: the problem is real.

So the question is: What is Singular doing about security and privacy? And, how are we enabling both while still providing best-in-class marketing analytics and mobile attribution?

Securing and advertising attribution

Every attribution provider has to maintain a critical set of design principles and methodologies for building, testing and auditing every single part of their platform to maximize data security, and that’s exactly what Singular has done.

It’s true: there is no silver bullet in security.

But prioritizing security when building products, together with comprehensive security knowledge and organization-wide awareness will minimize the chances for a breach.

Serving the world’s top advertisers, and with our engineering team composed of cyber security veterans, we are more than equipped to secure your most sensitive data. To date, Singular has never had a security breach.

That’s good news, but we’re not resting on our laurels.

In fact, under GDPR regulations,  attribution providers now have the regulatory requirement to report on any security incident within 72 hours from the time of breach.

Authentication is also of vital importance: your attribution provider must support two-factor authentication, single-sign on, and strong passwords to ensure your marketing data stays private.

Audits and pen testing

Security experts agree that periodic audits and penetration testing by respectable parties is another great tool to evaluate how secure your provider is with handling your data.

You have the right to see these proofs, and an honest vendor will be happy to show them to you. (So yes, you can ask us!)

Advertising attribution and privacy

Privacy, although often coupled with security, is a requirement on its own. It may not be something that most people think about when they think of an advertising attribution provider, but it is something we think about at Singular.

There are a number of important factors to consider around privacy:

Regulatory compliance:
Everyone says they comply, but Singular goes the extra mile. We comply with GDPR, CCPA, COPPA, and other standards. And we enable privacy-related requests such as Right of Erasure and Right of Access programmatically through a set of API endpoints. That’s scalable privacy.

Respecting your users privacy is critical
You need to protect your users’ privacy at all costs. That includes SDK-based methods to cease tracking for under-age users or users who did not consent. It also includes never, ever mixing one customer’s user data with another customer’s dataset.

Hint: if your attribution provider is touting people-based attribution as a core feature, you might want to ensure that no generally-available device or user graph is being enriched at your expense. And, maybe more importantly, your users’ expense.

And, respecting your users’ privacy means working on methods of accurately attributing marketing results and advertising impact even if device IDs like the IDFA go away.

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