TRUSTe launches opt-out mobile ad system

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TRUSTe debuted a new mobile ad system, called TRUSTed Mobile Ads, that is designed to give consumers greater control over how mobile marketers collect and use their personal information, complete with opt-out capabilities.

Developed in association with mobile advertisers, publishers, networks and platforms, the TRUSTe system supports mobile browsing and app privacy preferences across all operating systems and devices. Advertisements, web pages and apps that integrate the TRUSTed Mobile Ads service feature a small click-through icon enabling consumers to set their own Do Not Track or opt-out preferences; the service then maintains those preferences across subsequent mobile experiences by leveraging Trusted Preference Identifier, a universal device identification tool.

TRUSTed Mobile Ads includes a Mobile App Privacy SDK optimized for Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS and Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android. Mobile ad firms Greystripe, HasOffers, Human Demand, InMobi, Medialets and Nexage have already agreed to support TRUSTed Mobile Ads. Mobile game publisher Electronic Arts has also signed on to integrate the service.

According to TRUSTe, TRUSTed Mobile Ads is a direct response to regulatory scrutiny of mobile app privacy practices and corresponding consumer concerns. Recent TRUSTe research indicates that two-thirds of mobile apps lack privacy polices, and almost three-quarters of U.S. consumers worry about their privacy when accessing apps.

Last month, U.S. lawmakers sent letters to Apple and 33 iOS application developer partners seeking information about the way they collect and use consumer data. The letters followed the discovery that some iOS apps can upload entire address books to their servers, complete with names, telephone numbers and email addresses. Apple said it would upgrade its software so that developers can only access users' contact data after receiving explicit permission to do so.

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