RealTime IT News

Engage Technologies Claims 30 Million Profiles,

Engage Technologies said its Engage Knowledge database grew from 12 million to 30 million anonymous Web user profiles in just over two months.

"In almost tripling the number of visitor profiles in EngageKnowledge over a two-month period, Engage is delivering today on the possibilities of one-to- one online marketing and advertising," said Paul Schaut, Engage Technologies CEO. "In addition to the strong market acceptance of our solution, we're gaining some impressive support from technical innovators along with the online analyst community."

Engage said NBC Interactive will deploy the new Precision Profile-enabled Accipiter AdManager 4.0 on its VideoSeeker on-demand Internet video service.

"We expect to integrate Engage's new ad management and data mining tools with our proprietary registration process and video delivery, adding value to both our advertisers and users," said Todd Harris, director of creative development for NBC Interactive.

Other recent client additions include Virtual Billboard Networks; The Password; @dVenture, a division of Venture Direct Worldwide; and Planet Direct.

Engage Precision Profiles segment distinct user interests into categories based on user behavior (click stream habits), allowing ads to be more precisely targeted, the firm said.

It's clearly catching on rapidly, and a recent Jupiter Communications report said that improved targeting is what's needed to make Internet advertising really take off.

But not everyone is thrilled. The New York Times recently ran a story quoting some critics who concerned about threats to privacy. Engage does not record the names, e-mail addresses or credit card numbers of the people it gathers information from. Instead, it stated that it keeps track of users by placing a cookie on the hard drive of Web surfers.

"Engage has done many good things to protect privacy, but my worry is they are firing the starting gun in the race for the bottom," Jason Catlett, president of Junkbuster Corp., a privacy consulting firm, was quoted by the Times as saying. "The worst actors will be left to use the most sophisticated surveillance techniques as they please."

Engage is a corporate sponsor of Net privacy organization TRUSTe, an active member of the World Wide Web Consortium and the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), and has developed and submitted one of the few technical specifications for privacy standards on the Web.

Engage is a subsidiary of CMG Information Services Inc.