DOOH Measurement and the Privacy Tsunami of 2025

Privacy concerns about digital data are growing in California, in the United States, and of course across the European Union. The Dobbs decision in the USA and the subsequent Executive Order and FTC actions to protect sensitive location data will take time to unfold, but make no mistake the wave of change is coming. In Europe GDPR was just the start, and we are predicting a tsunami of new data regulations around the world by 2025.

Many smart advertisers and retailers have already made the decision to keep cameras away from their customers. In fact, several countries limit or even prohibit filming people without notification and consent.  

Location-based data collection gathered via apps on mobile devices are the next target. This so-called spyware is installed on apps via an SDK which then tracks your specific location and makes that available for a price from unscrupulous vendors such as X-Mode, SafeGraph, and Veraset.  

Recently both Google and Apple mandated that apps that use location data broker X-Mode be removed from the app store. Google has also banned SafeGraph and Predicio (Venntel).  While Apple is playing location privacy catchup to Google in the app store, iOS 16 has meaningful new protections for user location data. 

Another example of location-based spyware apps which are at risk is TikTok. TikTok has been under scrutiny for their ability to capture granular data, including precise location data, about its users and to share it with the Chinese government. In fact, recently it has been banned for use by government employees in several US states due to the concerns that the app collects granular location data.

Unfortunately, many advertising measurement vendors buy that location data from these unscrupulous vendors. These relationships pose several possible risks to you. 

  • First, when the crackdown comes from either Apple+Google or governments (or both), your data and insights will disappear overnight. Accurate and granular measurement is foundational to pDOOH operation, and these services are going to eventually be stopped.   
  • Even worse, it’s possible that the pDOOH networks and brands could be held responsible for privacy violations. Just last month Life360 was hit with a huge class action lawsuit filed against it for “selling consumers’ geolocation data to roughly a dozen data brokers, including Safegraph, Arity, Cuebiq and X-Mode, who in turn can sell the data to “virtually anyone who wants to buy it”. This wasn’t the first location-based spyware lawsuit – nor will it be the last.

BlueZoo sensors are GDPR compliant, gather no personally identifiable data, but can still report granular real-time insights about impressions, viewers, and dwell time. Privacy is at the core of everything we do, meaning our customers are protected from the coming tsunami. 

To learn more, see a demo, or to book a meeting, feel free to contact us: https://www.bluezoo.io/contact.

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