AOL Advertising Inc. (“we,” “us,” and “our”) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of AOL Inc., integrating AOL’s leading media properties, targeted marketing technology, and Advertising.com's mass reach into a unified solution for advertisers and publishers. AOL Advertising views the protection of individual privacy as critically important. Our proprietary technologies allow us to deliver relevant, targeted advertising to individuals, but not at the expense of individual privacy. It is our fundamental goal at AOL Advertising to remain the industry leader in Internet-enabled marketing and advertising, while maintaining our commitment to these standards.
AOL Advertising affiliations
European Union Residents: AOL Advertising adheres to the EU-US Safe Harbor Privacy Principles of Notice, Choice, Onward Transfer, Security, Data Integrity, Access and Enforcement, and is registered with the U.S. Department of Commerce's Safe Harbor Program. Click here for more details.
Information collection and use
Collection on AOL Advertising sites
We collect information when you visit AOL Advertising Sites, including information about how you use our sites, general clickstream behavior such as pages viewed, navigation from page to page on AOL Advertising Sites, time spent on each page, and items that visitors click or select (“Usage Information”). We also collect technical information such as the type of browser you are using (e.g., Netscape, Internet Explorer), the type of operating system you are using (e.g., Windows XP or Mac OS), CPU type (e.g. Pentium), your manner of connecting to the Internet (e.g., connection speed through narrowband or broadband access); Internet protocol address; information about your geographic location derived from your Internet protocol address; and the domain name of your Internet service provider (collectively, “Technical Information”). Unless you provide information that identifies you personally, for example by asking us to contact you to discuss our products and services, you are not personally identifiable to us.
AOL Advertising may use different types of technologies to collect information on AOL Advertising Sites, including cookies and web beacons.
If you register to participate in the AOL Advertising network as a publisher or an advertiser, we also collect information that identifies you personally such as your name, contact information, and payment method. We use this information for business purposes such as account maintenance, billing, and to operate the AOL Advertising services. This personally identifiable information may be associated with the Usage Information and Technical Information described above.
Information collected on AOL Advertising Sites may be combined with information collected from other sources.
Information collection on network participant sites
When you visit any of the websites that participate in our advertising network and view ads from our advertisers, we collect information, including Technical Information and Usage Information about your activities on the site.
In addition, Network Participants Sites may share certain non-personally identifiable information about their users (such as age, gender, and zip code) with AOL Advertising. AOL Advertising requires Network Participant Sites to inform their users about the information they share with third party networks such as AOL Advertising.
Information collected on Network Participant Sites may be combined with information collected from other sources.
AOL Advertising may use different types of technologies to collect information on Network Participant Sites, including cookies and web beacons.
AOL Advertising retains certain information, such as IP address, for a short period to aid in the targeting of ads by location and for fraud detection and prevention. Log files including detailed clickstream data used to create behavioral segments are retained in accordance with NAI guidelines for no longer than 2 years.
How collected information is used
AOL Advertising uses the information it collects on AOL Advertising Sites to operate and improve the Web sites, services and offerings available through the AOL Advertising Network, including:
• to customize the content and advertisements provided to you;
• to fulfill requests for products, programs, and services;
• to communicate with you and respond to your inquiries;
• to conduct research about the use of the AOL Advertising Sites; and
• to help offer you other products, programs, or services that may be of interest.
AOL Advertising uses the information collected on Network Participant Sites for marketing and sales efforts, and to better target advertisements to people across the different websites they visit. AOL Advertising may also use non-personally identifiable information to better target content to individuals in an effort to create a personally relevant experience. This information is also used to predict responses to advertisements, and to help determine which ads perform best and which content is most appropriate for different individuals.
Further information about the information collection and use practices of specific AOL Advertising product offerings is provided below.
AOL Advertising Audience Behaviors
Advertising.com’s network includes a collection of websites that have joined in an effort to improve ad delivery while maintaining stringent standards on the usage of user data. Advertising.com anonymously observes consumer behavior (including site visits and search queries) across thousands of websites in this network, and then organizes users into groups based on interests. Advertising.com matches ads to visitors' network browsing behavior; however, Advertising.com does not own or share this behavioral network visitor data.
Advertising.com Sponsored Listings
AOL Advertising partners with numerous companies to provide online advertisements in the form of content-targeted sponsored listings (advertising relevant to the theme or content of a webpage). Content-targeted advertising typically relates to what a user is reading on the page.
Some advertisers may use Advertising.com Sponsored Listings’ tracking technology to better understand the effectiveness of their marketing programs. This technology includes the use of "redirects" and pixel-based tracking technologies as well as anonymous cookies to understand users’ activities.
Information collected by these technologies includes the particular pages a user visits, what types of marketing effort the user responds to, purchase amounts and products purchased, as well as IP address, time of request, and other information made available by the user’s browser.
Information captured through Advertising.com Sponsored Listings’ technology is utilized by AOL Advertising and by associated clients and other companies to optimize and report on marketing programs.
Advertisers utilizing Advertising.com Sponsored Listings technology may provide personally-identifiable information to Advertising.com Sponsored Listings, which may then be combined with information about purchasing patterns of Advertising.com Sponsored Listings’ products and services, the advertiser's use of the Advertising.com Sponsored Listings technologies, performance of its advertisements, and all other information provided by the advertiser. This information is used to improve the applications provided to advertisers, improve the relevancy of ad serving and any other use deemed helpful to Advertising.com Sponsored Listings. Advertising.com Sponsored Listings regularly shares this information with key partners on an individual basis, for example by providing detailed reports to advertisers and publishers. Furthermore, Advertising.com Sponsored Listings and its partners may use this information to contact the advertiser about additional products and services.
We may also disclose information to a third party who provides substantially similar services as the original service signed up for, if we decide to stop providing such services ourselves. In such situations, we will provide our subscribers with an opportunity to opt-out of such sharing.
In addition to the above, there is also the possibility that AOL Advertising, or part(s) of the company, may one day be purchased by, or merged with, another company. In that the case, the acquiring (or merging) company will have access to your information.
AOL Advertising may share information on individuals as it deems necessary to comply with a court order or to cooperate with government and law enforcement officials.
Non-personally identifiable data may be shared with third-party partners of AOL Advertising on an anonymous basis.
AOL Advertising seeks to offer consumers meaningful privacy choices whenever possible. We believe that providing targeted and relevant content and advertising to Internet users enhances the web-surfing experience. You can opt out of the use of your non-personal information for targeting purposes. By opting out, AOL Advertising will set “opt-out cookies” on your computer, which will prevent your anonymous data from being matched to any particular machine. If you opt-out, you will continue to receive ads from AOL Advertising; however, it will prevent us from delivering ads tailored to your preferences and usage and may prevent us from controlling the frequency with which you may view particular advertisements. Be advised that if you change computers or browsers, delete your cookies, or use multiple computers or browsers, you will need to repeat this process for each computer and each browser.
We take appropriate security measures to protect against unauthorized access to or unauthorized alteration, disclosure or destruction of data. This includes physical, electronic, and managerial procedures to protect data integrity, access, and use.
AOL Advertising is very sensitive to the issue of children's privacy. Our websites, products, and services are neither developed for, nor directed at, children, and we do not knowingly collect personal information about children under 13. If you believe your child has provided AOL Advertising with personally identifiable data, or registered at one of AOL Advertising’s sites, and you would like to have the data removed, please contact us.
Changes to this policy
Questions, concerns and comments
Consumer Advocacy & Privacy
22000 AOL Way
Dulles, VA 20166
Last updated May 4, 2011