WASHINGTON, DC: The Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG), an organisation dedicated to increasing trust in digital advertising, has issued updated guidelines that require publishers to adopt and implement the ads.txt specification by July 1.

The new Certified Against Fraud Guidelines asks direct sellers to create a public record of their Authorized Digital Sellers by publishing an ads.txt file

Ads.txt (Authorized Digital Sellers), devised by the IAB Tech Lab, is a simple, flexible, and secure method for publishers and distributors to declare who is authorized to sell their inventory, thus improving transparency for programmatic buyers.

At the same time, TAG has updated its Certified Against Piracy Guidelines to offer an opportunity for direct buyers and publishers to be awarded its Certified Against Piracy seal.

TAG has also unveiled a new enforcement process for all of its certification programs that enables individuals and entities to submit allegations of non-compliance for review and potential action.

“As an industry-led initiative, TAG continuously adapts our programs and requirements to incorporate new best practices, block evolving criminal attacks, and meet the needs of our dynamically changing marketplace,” said Mike Zaneis, CEO of TAG.

“These new guidelines put teeth in the ads.txt initiative by requiring publishers to adopt it in order to receive TAG’s Certified Against Fraud Seal, and they move the ad buying and publisher communities from support to action in the fight against ad-supported piracy by giving each a simple path to certification.”

Recent independent studies commissioned by TAG have found that the use of TAG Certified distribution channels reduced fraud by more than 83% from broader industry averages and that anti-piracy steps taken by the industry have reduced revenue for pirate sites by between 48% and 61%.

Sourced from TAG; additional content by WARC staff