House of Commons to review MPs that use site ad trackers after CBC investigation

After a CBC investigation that indicated dozens of MPs use trackers on their websites to target advertising to visitors, the House of Commons has indicated it will be undertaking a review.

Heather Bradley, spokeswoman for the House of Commons, said to the CBC that there weren’t any rules with respect to trackers.

“The governing policy for MP websites does not cover the use of trackers,” Bradley said in an email to CBC. “MP websites linked from the House of Commons members’ information page cannot be used for campaign purposes.

“Following the dissolution of the of the 42nd Parliament, the administration is reviewing all of these websites for policy compliance and will follow up with MPs directly as required.”

The CBC report indicated that 87 percent of NDP MPs websites were redirected to the NDP.ca campaign site or to a site to reelect MPs that include donation buttons. The investigation revealed that dozens of MPs had ad trackers on their websites, which would target visitors to their sites during the election campaign.

CBC explained that this means those people visiting sites to try and contact an MP may find re-election ads for the MP’s site they visited on their Facebook feed or on other websites they later visit.

CBC uncovered that at least 99 MPs had one or more trackers used to target advertising.

The investigation discovered that the NDPs had the most, Liberals had the lowest and Conservatives varied.

These trackers raise privacy concerns and privacy and democracy watchdogs are calling for more oversight and a review when the next Parliament is in session.

Source: CBC