Privacy regulators in Europe are beginning to investigate real-time bidding where hundreds of potential bidders find information about your location, birthday, and interests to determine what ads to present when you load a website, according to The Wall Street Journal.
In the milliseconds that it takes for a website to load, a real-time bid goes on in a split second to see what ads should be presented to you. Your information about race, health, and browser history is shared between hundreds of companies.
U.K.’s Information Commissioner’s Office, the country’s data-protection authority, said real-time ad auctions violate the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation because that information is shared without the consumer’s consent.
Ireland’s Data Protection Commission has opened up its own investigation into the matter. Their investigation will look at whether each step of a real-time advertising is compliant with the GDPR. Their inspection will focus on the largest player in digital advertising, Alphabet’s Google.
Privacy regulators all over Europe are launching similar investigations.