Privacy strategies for iOS

Update your app for iOS 14+

In June 2020, Apple announced an update requiring apps to ask users for permission to access Apple's identifier for advertisers (IDFA) through a prompt called App Tracking Transparency (ATT) framework. We are sharing our recommendations for how you can update your app and help protect your ad revenue.

Keep your Google Mobile Ads (GMA) SDK and Interactive Media Ads (IMA) SDK up to date 

We encourage you to always keep your Google Mobile Ads (GMA) or Interactive Media Ads (IMA) SDK up to date in order to take advantage of the latest features and functionality. We regularly release new updates and features to improve performance. Install the latest Google Mobile Ads SDK for iOS (version 7.64 or later).

If you use the IMA SDK, install:

  • IMA iOS version 3.12.1 or later
  • IMA tvOS version 4.3.2 or later 
  • PAL iOS version 2.2.2 or later
  • PAL tvOS version 2.2.2 or later   

About SDK instance ID

With the latest versions of the GMA and IMA SDKs, a rotating SDK instance ID is automatically generated for each app to ensure effective delivery, display, and integrity of ads. SDK Instance ID is unique for your apps and helps maximize your apps' ad performance.

About publisher first-party ID, formerly known as same app key

Version 8.3.0 of the GMA SDK and Version 3.14.5 of the IMA SDK introduced publisher first-party ID (formerly known as same app key), an encrypted identifier assigned to a unique user within your apps. Publisher first-party ID helps you deliver more relevant and personalized ads by using data collected from your apps. Publisher first-party ID cannot be used to link user activity from your apps to third-party apps.

Publisher first-party ID is enabled by default, but you can always disable it in your SDK (GMA SDK or IMA SDK) or in your Ad Manager account

Your app users are able to opt-out of ads personalization based on publisher first-party ID through in-ad controls. Ads personalization using publisher first-party ID respects existing privacy settings, including NPA, RDP, and TFCD/TFUA.

Decide whether Apple's ATT prompt is right for your app

When employing the ATT framework, we recommend you pay close attention to the wording in your content and run tests to find what works best for your app. 

Some developers may choose to show an explainer message that appears to users immediately before the ATT prompt with details about how user data is used and how users can opt in to personalized ads. If you choose to show an explainer message, you can use Privacy & messaging to manage your ATT permission and create an explainer message and/or EU user consent message that your users see just beforehand. Learn more about IDFA messages in Privacy & messaging.  

Please note that, for users in the European Economic Area along with the UK, Google's EU user consent policy continues to apply and should be taken into account in designing any message that precedes the ATT alert.

Configure Apple's SKAdNetwork

Advertisers will be using Apple's SKAdNetwork to measure the performance of their ad campaigns and the value they get from advertising in your app. In order for advertisers to identify your app as a valuable source of their ads traffic you will need to configure SKAdNetwork with Google's Network key. Learn more about configuring the SKAdNetwork for mobile.

Safeguard your iOS advertising campaigns

If you also advertise with Google App campaigns, you can learn more about how to prepare for ATT enforcement.

Use key-value pairs to target based on IDFA availability

Well-targeted yield groups and pricing rules can help you test and optimize the performance of ad requests with and without IDFA. Create a key-value pair to target ad requests based on IDFA availability. Then, use that key-value pair in custom targeting when you create a new yield group or pricing rule.

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