Well you knew it was just a matter of time before Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica data leak turned into a full blown headache for digital publishers. As explained by WSJ, advertisers are starting to connect the dots between FB’s inability to control the dissemination of its own data and what could happen when a brand’s proprietary data, which publishers including FB ingest for CRM-based data matches, were to be leaked in the same way. In other words if FB has my data in their walled garden, can third party bad actors like Cambridge Analytica steal my data too?
This is an especially big issue for the duopoly who take in the most second party non-anonymized data without disclosing to advertisers how their customer information is being used. It looks like brands are starting to act on their concerns by pulling off the platforms – as of last Friday both Sonos and Pep Boys had suspended their advertising on FB and several others are reevaluating their partnerships. In the short term data bleed concerns will probably effect FB and then maybe Google the most.
Increased scrutiny of how publishers protect marketers’ data is totally justified given the massive investment shift into digital, as shown the in graphic below. So don’t be surprised if all publishers start being held accountable for safeguarding the clients’ data that they ingest.