The Principles

The Canadian self-regulatory principles for online behavioural advertising (also known as the AdChoices program principles) were developed by the Digital Advertising Alliance of Canada (DAAC), in conjunction with other global programs, to apply consumer-friendly standards to online interest-based advertising across the web.

The principles are designed to preserve the innovative and robust advertising ecosystem that supports the vast array of free online content in Canada, and the ability to deliver relevant advertising to consumers, in a manner consistent with applicable Canadian privacy laws.

The Principles

Companies should download and thoroughly review the program’s principles document. (PDF)

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The principles are:

Education

The Education principle calls for entities to participate in efforts to educate individuals and businesses about online interest-based advertising.

Notice & Transparency

The Transparency principle calls for clear, meaningful and prominent notice to consumers about data collection and use practices associated with online interest-based advertising. The principle sets out requirements for enhanced notice on the page where data is collected through links embedded in or around advertisements, or on the webpage itself.

Consumer Control

The Consumer Control principle provides consumers with an ability to choose whether data is collected and used for online interest-based advertising purposes. This choice will be available through various means, including a link from the notice provided on the webpages where data is collected.

The Consumer Control principle also requires that “Service Providers”, a term that includes internet access service providers (ISPs) and providers of desktop applications and software such as web browsers and toolbars, provide a means for consumers to exercise choice with respect to the collection and use of that data for online interest-based advertising.

Data Security

The Data Security principle calls for entities to provide appropriate security for, and limited retention of, data collected and used for online interest-based advertising purposes. Additional requirements are in place to address the treatment of IBA data by Service Providers under this principle as well.

Sensitive Data

The Sensitive Data principle prohibits entities from collecting personal information for IBA purposes from children they have actual knowledge are under the age of 13 or from sites directed to children under the age of 13 for IBA, or otherwise engaging in IBA directed to children they have actual knowledge are under the age of 13, unless such collection and other treatment of personal information is in accordance with Canadian privacy legislation.

Entities are also prohibited from collecting or using sensitive personal information for IBA purposes without consent, as required and otherwise in accordance with Canadian privacy legislation.

Accountability

Under the Accountability principle, Advertising Standards Canada (ASC), the independent advertising self-regulatory body, monitors companies participating in the program for compliance with the principles, and works cooperatively with them to effect compliance. ASC also accepts and responds to complaints about practices that may not comply with the principles.

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