Feeds

eBay UK pimps users' privacy for targeted ads

When opt out means locked out

Application security programs and practises

Updated: eBay users in the UK will start seeing adverts targeting them based on the kind of items they view and bid for while browsing the online tat-house.

And if they don't want their info being used to target ads, their only option seems to be to leave the online marketplace altogether, according to an email announcing the changes.

The Phorm-style service is dubbed AdChoice in the US, where it is provided by Tacoda, which also works with various other sites including Ebookers, AP.com, CNN, HowStuffWorks.com and WallStreetJournal.com.

AdChoice is launching in the UK this month, though it is not yet clear whether Tacoda will be the supplier here.

From 13 July, new users, will be served "relevant" ads. The service is opt-out - if you don't like it you must change your eBay account preferences.

Existing eBay users should already have received an email warning them of the changes, which will come in from from 13 August.

The change comes in the last paragraph of a lengthy marketing email from eBay.

Under the heading "*Customising Your eBay Experience*" the email said: "You'll notice a new preference now available in My eBay -: named AdChoice -: that lets you tell us whether you want us to use the information we have about you to customize the ads you see. You'll be able to sign in and change your advertising preferences in My eBay at any time. In some cases, we may also use information from other companies to select the right audiences for our promotions."

Despite this promise that the service is opt-out the marketing email concludes: "We hope you'll agree that these changes will make the eBay sites and services work better for you. If you accept the new User Agreement and Privacy Policy, you don't need to take any action. If you do not wish to accept the new User Agreement or Privacy Policy, please refer to our Help pages for instructions on how to close your account."

So it's more like an "opt-in or bugger-off" policy?

We're still waiting to hear back from eBay UK* as to whether this means users will be forced to accept targeted advertising or give up using the online junk bazaar altogether.

But we're betting eBay is starting yet another row with their users over this issue - first negative feedback, then PayPal and now this.

Updated:

eBay sent us the following statement and made clear that if you opt out of AdChoice your eBay account will not change: "AdChoice provides a more personalised and relevant shopping experience for our users, based on previous searches and items bought. Participation in this programme is entirely optional and does not involve disclosure of personal information to any third parties.

More generally, eBay views the protection of our users' privacy as an extremely important principle and we do not disclose personal information to third parties for marketing purposes without a user’s explicit consent.”®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330
If the person in front reclines their seat, this could get interesting
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
Want to beat Verizon's slow Netflix? Get a VPN
Exec finds stream speed climbs when smuggled out
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
Big Blue Apple: IBM to sell iPads, iPhones to enterprises
iOS/2 gear loaded with apps for big biz ... uh oh BlackBerry
Price cuts, new features coming for Office 365 small biz customers
New plans for companies with up to 300 staff to launch in fall
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.