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Double Click Inc Report

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Updated: Dec 13th, 2019

Double Click Inc was established in the year 1995 as an internet application service provider (Huff, 2002). In the year 1999, Abacus Direct Company merged with the company with the aim of improving on their services (Huff, 2002). Abacus Direct Company focuses on data collection.

With their association, there were fears that secret web-serving profiles collected by Abacus would be compromised. In this article, three legal, three ethical, and three regulatory issues that should be addressed by the company are discussed.

Currently, the company is tainted with several legal controversies. As such, the three major legal issues that the company should address are privacy violations, profiling, and unintended use of cookies (Huff, 2002). The company has several pending lawsuits related to private policy issues. In its operations, the company collects data from the internet users.

A number of information collected by the company includes the type of web browsers, operating systems, ISPs, and bandwidths. The information is recorded in the company’s generic cookie. The cookie captures the time the online user saw the advert, advert placement id, user id, client’s IP address, and a user referral URL.

Through this, the company violates users’ privacy rights. To avoid future legal battles, the company should inform their clients that they are tracking their activities online because they are doing so now without their consent.

Concerning profiling, the company with the use of cookies can track individuals as they navigate from one site to another. Through this, the company can precisely pinpoint the time and date the user saw the advert without the consent of the user.

Similarly, by analyzing the users’ IP addresses the company can pinpoint the users’ countries, towns, and cities.

Through frequency capping technology, the company uses the cookie information it captures to target advertisements with regard to the number of times a user accesses a specific message on the internet. Through this, the company breaches users’ privacy rights and are liable to prosecution.

Ethical issues

Based on the case study, Double Click is flawed with numerous ethical issues. Among the top three ethical issues are fraudulent advertising, dishonest privacy policy, and theft of information (Huff, 2002).

Fraudulent advertising happens when an organization or an individual comes up with deliberate deceptive and deceitful announcements with respect to their goods and services with the aim of increasing their sales. It is unethical for any company to engage in fraudulent advertising.

Therefore, Double Click must address the issue with immediate effect. In the case study, the company has deceitfully routed a number of Internet users to its clients’ websites through the circulation of misleading advertising posters that imitate e-mail messages.

Through this, the company has deceived millions of online users into delay their daily chores to reply to illusory system messages.

Another ethical issue the company should tackle is dishonesty. Some users have accused the company for misleading them. According to these users, the company lies to the users that they can freely opt out of its IP address-based tracking system. In reality, the users’ opt-out option is ineffective.

To avoid damaging its reputation, the company should rebuild the users and operators trust by formulating appropriate private policies. Equally, the company should outline these policies on their website for everyone to access them. These policies should be accurate and clear.

In addition, the company should address ethical issues related to theft of information. In the case study, it is alleged that the company shares users’ information with the third parties.

Given that the information can easily be tapped or used by online fraudsters from the third parties, it is unethical for the company to engage in these acts without appropriate security measures. Thus, the company should move with haste to implement the appropriate measures that will ensure that the users’ information is used as intended.

Regulatory issues

In America, the Federal Trade Commission is mandated to control all e-business activities. Some of the most vital regulations all online businesses should observe include safeguarding the consumers’ privacy and conforming to advertising policies.

Based on the case study, it is apparent that Double Click is stained with a number of regulatory issues (Huff, 2002). The issues include protecting the customers’ privacy online, breaching online advertising compliance, and mishandling consumer data.

Double Click’s owners should ensure that their consumers’ data is safeguarded as required by the federal and state privacy laws. Given that the government may take several years before they come with appropriate and holistic measures regarding privacy policies, the company should come up with self-regulatory measures.

For instance, they should not share the customers’ information with the third parties unless they ensure that the parties have put in place measures to safeguard personal privacy.

With respect to online advertising compliance, FTC’s regulation on advertising requires all ecommerce businesses to safeguard their clients and avoid illusory and unjust acts or practices.

On the contrary, Double Click has contravened this regulation through fraudulent advertising. Thus, it must stop from this act or face prosecution in the future.

By sharing the clients’ information, Double Click has mishandled the consumers’ information. The case study asserts that a complaint has been filed with the FTC regarding on the issue.

It is alleged that the company has persistently refused to disclose where and how they get their users’ personal details. Thus, there are chances that the company mishandles their users’ information, and that may be the reason they do not want to disclose how they obtain them.


Huff, S. L. (2002). Social and Legal Issues. Boston: McGraw-Hill.

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