McAfee Lends Security to 99% of Rich Media Ads in U.S.

McAfee and Adgregate have partnered on what they're calling the industry's first secure advertising. WebProNews spoke...
McAfee Lends Security to 99% of Rich Media Ads in U.S.
Written by Chris Crum

McAfee and Adgregate have partnered on what they’re calling the industry’s first secure advertising. WebProNews spoke with Brent Remai, VP of Consumer Marketing at McAfee about what this means for advertising.

"The ad world is a $30B pie, and everybody wants their piece, including malicious advertisers, whose "malvertising" has become extraordinarily more sophisticated," the company says. "Companies must instill confidence in consumers that when they click on or transact in an ad or widget application, that the ad or app is just as legitimate as the advertiser’s existing website. It’s a dirty little secret of online advertising because no one wants to admit their ad networks are vulnerable."

McAfee will perform daily site scanning that tests retailers’ sites for more than 10,000 vulnerabilities. Once they are cleared, their ads will get a badge from McAfee, which is designed to inspire trust and confidence in the consumer. "Their site is deemed totally secure," says Remai.

McAfee Secure Ads - Through Adgregate

Rich media ads with the badge will allow consumers to complete transactions within the ads themselves, rather than having to go to a landing page – something Remai calls "pretty transformative."

Adgregate’s advertising and e-commerce partners include DoubleClick, PointRoll, EyeWonder, Eyeblaster, Linkstorm, Collective Media, Greystripe, Demandware, IBM Websphere Commerce, Escalate Retail, and others to account for what the company claims is over 99% of the rich media online and mobile ads distributed in the U.S., as well as 80% of the e-commerce fulfillment solutions for the Top 500 Internet Retailers.

"The message we are sending to the market today is clear: Advertisers face huge business and legal risks with the distributed web, and their customers deserve the most secure solution available — the one now being provided by McAfee and Adgregate, the leaders in distributed commerce and security," says Adgregate CEO Henry Wong. "Anything short of this puts a brand’s reputation in serious jeopardy."

Based on A/B testing, which took place between July 2008 and January 2009, sites that displayed McAfee’s Secure trustmark badge have seen a 12% increase in conversions. In tests from Adgregate and McAfee with select advertisers, display of the badge resulted in a 75% sales increase and a 41% engagement lift when compared with non-McAfee ads, McAfee says.

Update: Adgregate also has a similar partnership in place with TRUSTe, built on privacy certification. Like the McAfee badge, there is also a TRUSTe badge.

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