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2015 Update to the NAI Mobile Application Code

In 2013, NAI released its first Mobile Application Code in order to clarify how the principles of the 2013 NAI Code of Conduct, including Notice and User Control, applied in the growing mobile “Cross-App Advertising” ecosystem.

As technology rapidly evolves, NAI enables our members to be industry innovation leaders by consistently updating our Codes of Conduct to address new needs. For example, we recently issued a 2015 update to our Code of Conduct.

Following on that 2015 Code update, NAI has today released the 2015 Update to the Mobile Application Code (“App Code”) in order to incorporate many of the changes in the 2015 Code update and apply them to the mobile advertising ecosystem. This updated App Code does not add new substantive requirements for member companies, but rather it clarifies existing obligations.

For example, the update to the App Code provides clarifications regarding member requirements when engaging in Cross-App Advertising activities based on sensitive health conditions and when engaging in retargeting ads in mobile applications. Interpretations of these requirements were previously included in the commentary to the original NAI Mobile Application Code and the commentary to the 2013 NAI Code of Conduct. As was done through the 2015 Code update, this information is now present in the body of the App Code itself. In this way, the App Code now more closely mirrors the updated NAI Code of Conduct and NAI continues to apply consistently high principles for privacy in both web-based and app-based targeted advertising.

The 2015 App Code will go into effect on September 1, 2015. However, NAI will provide an implementation period for its members, and will not begin full enforcement until January 1, 2016. In the coming weeks, NAI staff will provide a series of webinars to educate members about the requirements of the 2015 App Code. Additionally, through the end of 2015, member companies will be able to undergo voluntary compliance reviews of their “Cross-App Advertising” activities, and NAI staff will hold informal conversations with members to better prepare them for compliance with the 2015 App Code. Beginning January 1, 2016, NAI will begin full enforcement of the 2015 App Code.

We are excited about this App Code update which brings NAI’s high standards to the latest emerging technologies. This step is continued evidence of NAI’s lasting commitment to strong self-regulation to protect consumer privacy while helping business thrive. We encourage our members to reach out to NAI staff with any questions or comments.