Nielsen is transforming the methodology behind its digital measurement products in response to evolving data privacy regulations and the decreasing reliance on third-party cookies.

The new methodology will apply to Nielsen’s suite of digital products, including Digital Content Ratings, Digital in TV Ratings, Digital Ad Ratings, Total Content Ratings and Total Ad Ratings.

Though it hasn’t provided full details, Nielsen says the privacy-centric methodology will help provide more transparency across third parties and the internet, enhance reporting of personal and connected devices and enable measurement flexibility by reducing reliance on third parties. 

Nielsen’s end goal is to position digital companies to better monetize their assets, optimize spend and confirm cross-platform campaign delivery. For marketers, this means a more holistic view of both television and digital data.

To support the revamp of its digital measurement, Nielsen will leverage its census data collection technology, proprietary network of walled gardens and platform data providers and new deduplication methodologies.

Nielsen chief operating officer Karthik Rao told TechCrunch that a focus on the portability of data and data models, plus the deduplication of audience, will ensure it doesn’t inadvertently count the same users on different platforms.

Nielsen will launch the new methodology in phases starting in early 2021.

The pandemic has prompted companies to adopt a host of digital services, posing new risks over data privacy breaches. Cillian Kieran, the CEO and founder of Ethyca, says that businesses can de-risk by performing diligence on third parties that process customer data, designating a data protection officer and ensuring clarity of privacy policies for consumers.