TikTok is seeking to bring its ad targeting processes in line with emerging data privacy norms by introducing a new tool called PrivacyGo. This tool allows advertisers to match their CRM data with TikTok's audience insights in a privacy-protective manner.
The tool essentially functions as a data clean room, providing a protected digital space where collaborating parties can share their data. This arrangement ensures the data can be used for ad targeting without either party gaining access to the other's information, enabling more precise audience targeting without violating regulations.
Business Insider reports that TikTok is currently testing its PrivacyGo tool, with plans to roll it out more broadly in the near future.
TikTok has stated that the tool uses multi-party computation (MPC) and differential privacy to keep the data sets separate, ensuring no access from any of the related parties. The company also notes that the U.S. Government employs the same approach for analyzing census data, which it hopes will reassure users and advertisers about the tool's safety and compliance with standards.
Given its Chinese ownership, TikTok is under intense scrutiny over its data usage practices. The company is still under investigation by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) due to potential ties to the Chinese government. This scrutiny, along with concerns from other regions about TikTok's data-gathering practices, underscores the importance of this tool for TikTok.
By successfully implementing PrivacyGo, TikTok can continue to leverage sensitive user data to enhance ad targeting without violating evolving data protection regulations. If the tool proves effective, it could help brands optimize their ad campaigns by improving ad targeting options and reaching more engaged audiences on the platform.
This development will undoubtedly be closely watched, and TikTok will likely need to provide detailed explanations to reassure its advertising partners. However, if successful, it could greatly enhance ad targeting capabilities on TikTok.