Prodded by an enforcement proceeding by the compliance team for the Better Business Bureau (and perhaps an earlier post here), device fingerprinter Blue Cava amended its privacy disclosures last week. A key point was to add disclosure of the practice of associating different devices (and behavioral profiles) through a common IP address. This allows Blue Cava is associate your smartphone with your laptop and vice versa, adding depth to your profile and enabling its application across a wider set of online interactions. To make it work, Blue Cava needs only to watch for patterns in the relationship between your device fingerprint and the IP addresses where they see it.
Unlike in the old days when the family used to gather around the one radio for news and entertainment (and warmth–vacuum tubes get hot!), the average 21st century household requires multiple devices for both work and play. When we use snapshots to create a unique Device ID, we are also able to group related devices into “households” based on strong, common characteristics among the snapshots, like IP addresses. By understanding these households, we can make sure that (sic) so we can help our customers understand how devices are related so they can deliver content personalized to you based on your interests gathered from all your devices, no matter which device you are using and not just your primary device.