Google Moving Toward Encrypted Ad Services

Google engineers have spent the last several years moving many of the company’s online services to encrypted links. Gmail is HTTPS by default, and Google search is done over SSL for much of the world. Now the company is working to move its ad-serving and ad-buying platforms to HTTPS, as well.

Google’s ad networks are pervasive and show ads to hundreds of millions of users around the world every day. The content from those ads comes from a variety of places and in a variety of formats, mainly controlled by the advertisers and networks. To help protect users’ privacy and security, Google plans to serve most of its ads over encrypted links by the end of June.

“By June 30, 2015, the vast majority of mobile, video, and desktop display ads served to the Google Display Network, AdMob, and DoubleClick publishers will be encrypted,” Neal Mohan, VP Product Management, Display and Video Ads, and Jerry Dischler, VP Product Management, AdWords, at Google wrote in a post.

Google also is planning to make a similar change for advertisers buying ads through Google. That means that advertisers who use platforms such as AdWords will be able to serve encrypted display ads to all of the Google properties that are HTTPS-enabled, such as Gmail. The changes are a part of the company’s efforts to encrypt as much content and services as possible.

“Of course we’re not alone in this goal. By encrypting ads, the advertising industry can help make the internet a little safer for all users. Recently, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) published a call to action to adopt HTTPS ads, and many industry players are also working to meet HTTPS requirements. We’re big supporters of these industry-wide efforts to make HTTPS everywhere a reality,” Mohan and Dischler wrote.

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