IAB UK unveils plans for Gold Standard 2.0, including independent auditing

David Murphy

IAB UK has revealed that it will release a new iteration of Gold Standard later this year, bolstering the certification process and incorporating steps to address privacy concerns within the digital supply chain.

The original Gold Standard launched in October 2017, with the first companies certified in early 2018. It has three fundamental aims: to reduce ad fraud; improve the digital advertising experience; and increase brand safety.

Companies need to take three steps to certify: implement IAB Tech Labs’ ads.txt; undergo an independent JICWEBS DTSG (Joint Industry Committee for Web Standards Digital Trading Standards Group audit; and adhere to the principles set out by the Coalition for Better Ads.

There are currently 93 companies certified, including publishers, platforms, media agencies and ad tech companies, with a further 11 registered to certify. In addition, six advertisers have publicly committed their support for the Gold Standard.

Gold Standard 2.0 will require companies to adopt IAB Europe’s Transparency & Consent Framework version 2 (TCF v2.0). This will be introduced in Q4 2020, following a process of industry consultation to agree the compliance criteria for incorporating the TCF within Gold Standard certification.

In addition, IAB UK plans to employ an independent third-party to audit the Gold Standard certification process, ensuring the robustness of the industry standard. Both plans were announced by IAB UK’s Chief Digital Officer Tim Elkington at the industry body’s Digital Trust Forum this morning.

He said: “The Gold Standard only remains relevant if it evolves to keep pace with challenges our industry faces. As we seek to improve transparency and build trust in digital advertising, addressing privacy concerns is a key part of that. We will now be embarking on a process of consultation with IAB UK members to agree how to effectively incorporate the TCF into the Gold Standard – a key step as we seek to build a responsible and sustainable future for the digital ad industry.”