Should Online Ads Be Allowed to Know If You Have AIDS?

Chloe Albanesius writes in PC Magazine:

Targeting health conditions like cancer and sexually transmitted diseases would be off-limits to online marketers under new rules proposed by a group of Internet advertisers. Interest groups, however, were skeptical that the rules will go far enough, or that the government will take any meaningful steps to protect consumers online.


At issue are ads that are tailored to a user based on their Internet activity. The more you use the Web, the more information a company can gather on your surfing habits so that the ads you see are more likely to advertise something that might appeal to you. Theoretically, a sophisticated ad algorithm that noticed a user searching for “cancer support group” might conclude that the user had or was affected by cancer, and could place relevant ads in front of him or her.

Full story – PC Magazine

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