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Helping Publishers Police Their Own Websites

Evidon Encompass Revenue Protection rolls out in October
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The advertising technology firm Evidon, the company behind those ubiquitous AdChoices icons that appear in banner ads, was founded to help educate consumers about who’s tracking what with regards to their Web surfing habits (and, of course, to help the online ad industry stave off potential federal regulation). Now, the company wants to start offering that same sort of transparency to publishers, who, it claims, often don’t know which third parties have placed cookies and ad tags on their sites.

In October, the company will roll out Evidon Encompass Revenue Protection, a product designed to show companies who’s pulling data from their sites, how they got there, how they impact site performance and how to get rid of them.

“You’d be astonished how many companies have no idea what’s going on with their website,” said Scott Meyer, CEO of Evidon.

What makes Meyer so sure? Ghostery, a browser add-on Evidon acquired in 2010, notifies its 16 million monthly active users what companies are leaving tracking codes on the sites they visit. The tool also pulls data from 26 million Web domains via an opt-in panel of 7 million users.

Of course, online publishers let ad tech companies drop tracking codes on pages for legitimate reasons, like facilitating programmatic ad buying. But unauthorized companies can finagle ways to drop codes as well, slowing down the loading of Web pages and potentially siphoning off valuable audience data.