Phorm To Launch Controversial Ad-Tracking System in 2009

17 December 2008

LONDON: Phorm, the company behind a controversial system that tracks web users behaviour and provides them with targeted ads, will launch its full service in the UK in 2009 after the end of a successful trial with telecoms titan BT.

BT's use of Phorm's system has previously attracted the attention of the Crown Prosecution Service, the City of London Police, the European Commission and even Tim Berners Lee, founder of the world wide web.

However, in a statement to the London Stock Exchange, Phorm said: "The trial achieved its primary objective of testing all the elements necessary for a larger deployment, including the serving of small volumes of targeted advertising."

As well as BT indicating an interest in utilising the company's full service, rival broadband providers Virgin Media and TalkTalk are also said to be conducting trials of the ad-tracking system.

Says Phorm's chief executive, Kent Ertugrul: "We have met with most of the main players in the advertising sector and they welcome the potential commercial value of the service. 

"We have not set a date for a full launch, as this depends on several factors such as the ISPs, but we are looking at a launch in the near term. This is a first half of 2009 initiative."

Data sourced from Brand Republic/; additional content by WARC staff