Privacy Policy

Last updated: August 2022

Advertising Standards Canada (“Ad Standards” or “we”) is the national, not-for-profit, advertising self-regulatory organization created by the Canadian advertising industry with a mandate to ensure the integrity and viability of Canadian advertising for all consumers. We take seriously our commitment to protecting your privacy and Personal Information in accordance with our obligations under all applicable privacy laws and regulations. “Personal Information" is any information that can be used to distinguish, identify or contact a specific individual. In this Privacy Policy, we set out how we collect, use, disclose, and protect your Personal Information on our website, databases, social media, and e-mail correspondence (the “Properties”).


Contact Us

Ad Standards is responsible for the Personal Information in our control, including information we receive directly or indirectly. If you have any questions about our privacy practices, please contact our Privacy Officer at



We may change any part of this Privacy Policy at any time. Please check this Privacy Policy frequently for changes.


The Personal Information We Collect

We collect information when a person voluntarily provides us with his/her Personal Information. We collect, use, or disclose this information in a manner consistent with this Privacy Policy.

Consumer Complaints

Ad Standards accepts written consumer complaints in English and French about advertising through e-mail, mail, social media (e.g. Twitter and LinkedIn) or, most commonly, our Online Complaint Submission Form. When you submit a complaint, we collect your contact information, such as your first and last name, complete mailing address, telephone number, and e-mail address. When submitting a complaint, you will explain the reason or basis for the complaint and, if known, the provision(s) of the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards (the “Code”) that may apply.

General Inquiries

Ad Standards may collect your Personal Information if you contact us to help you with a problem. In most instances, we would collect your first and last name, address, telephone number, and e-mail address.

E-mail Updates

Ad Standards issues e-mail updates to help keep industry and consumers informed about issues, trends, and developments concerning advertising self-regulation. We collect your first and last name, e-mail address, company, and job title for these communications.

We gather statistics about how many people open and click on links in the e-mails that we send, so that we can monitor how they are used and continue to improve upon them. You can opt-out of receiving e-mail updates from us by following the unsubscribe instructions contained in each of these e-mail communications. Alternatively, you can unsubscribe by contacting us at

Clearance Services

Ad Standards offers Clearance Services (“Clearance”) to help ensure advertising meets regulatory requirements for five advertising categories: Alcoholic Beverages; Children’s Advertising; Cosmetics; Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages; and Health Products. Clearance Analysts provide a fee-based, objective, and independent advertising copy review and advisory service. Clearance also offers consultation services for new product launches and advertising concepts. Clearance is offered in both English and French and applies to any advertisement that falls within the definition of Advertising as set out in the Code, which includes television, radio, print, digital, social media, and out-of-home.

We use our e-Clearance database to collect advertisements that have been submitted for review. In order to submit an advertisement on the e-Clearance database, an e-Clearance account is needed. When you create an e-Clearance account, we will collect the following information from you: first and last name, e-mail, job title, company name and address, telephone number, and correspondence language.

When an advertisement is submitted for review, only the information relevant to Clearance is collected through the database. Such information includes the copy and creative for the advertisement, and when applicable, attestations to substantiate claims made in the advertisement, packaging, and licenses.

Event Registration

We may collect Personal Information from you when you sign-up for an Ad Standards event. This information may include your first and last name, job title, place of employment, and contact information.

For Ad Standards events, you may be re-directed to a third party website to complete registration and payment. This Privacy Policy only applies to information we collect through our Properties. The third parties may have different data practices and we encourage you to read the privacy statements of these other websites, especially if you intend to share your Personal Information with that website.


We use cookies to collect only analytical information about visits to our website.


How we Use Personal Information

We limit the use of your Personal Information to the purpose for which it was collected. If we need to use your Personal Information for a different purpose, then we will contact you and obtain your consent.

Consumer Complaints

We use the Personal Information submitted by you through a complaint to respond to your complaint in an efficient and thorough manner. Ad Standards’ agents, including the Standards Council that adjudicates complaints, may also have the Personal Information you submit. The Standards Council adjudicates consumer complaints about advertising. It is composed of representatives from the advertising industry and the public, who volunteer their time to review complaints that raise potential issues under the Code.

 When you submit a complaint, you can choose whether your Personal Information is included when Ad Standards contacts the advertiser about the complaint.

General Inquiries

If you have a question or concern for Ad Standards, we will collect and use only the information necessary to respond to you.

Newsletter Subscription

We use your Personal Information collected for the e-mail updates for the purpose of sending these updates to you.

Clearance Services

Information collected through the eClearance database is used to provide Clearance Services. This information may also be used to contact you in the future about Ad Standards events.

Event Registration

If you choose to reserve or purchase a spot at one of our events, such as our Code Seminars and Clearance Holiday Breakfasts, we process the Personal Information that you provide for those events. We may use third parties as agents of Ad Standards to handle registration and process payment information. Those agents may not use the information for other purposes.


The analytical information we collect through the cookies on our website helps us monitor website traffic and use patterns and does not personally identify you. We may use this information to track how users are interacting with our website and to make improvements.

This information may include:

  • the visitor’s domain or Internet Protocol (IP) address;
  • date and time of visit;
  • information about the webpages accessed;
  • searches performed;
  • the website visited prior to visiting our website (i.e. the referring website); and
  • the type of web browser.

Google Signals

We use Google Analytics and its extension Google Signals. When a Google user has Ads Personalization turned on, Google Signals uses an anonymized process for collecting session data from websites and apps. The information from Google Signals may include end user location, search history, and data from other websites that partner with Google. Google Signals helps us understand how you interact with our website across multiple devices and sessions so we have an accurate account of the number of users who visit our website.

You can opt out of Google Analytics and Google Signals through this opt-out for Google Analytics.


Your Personal Information will not be used or disclosed for purposes other than those for which it was collected, except with consent or as required or permitted by law. We do not trade, rent, sell or otherwise disclose any Personal Information to third parties for commercial purposes other than our own.

We may use third parties to perform functions on our behalf, such as sending e-mails, conducting surveys, analyzing data, information technology support, event registration, and processing credit card payments. These third parties will have access only to the information that is needed to perform their functions.

Consumer Complaints

Ad Standards may share your Personal Information with its agents, legal counsel, or other representative and affiliates in order to reach a resolution on your behalf. When required, or with consent, we may also share your Personal Information with the advertiser responsible for the advertisement that is the subject of the complaint.

If your complaint is about something beyond Ad Standards’ scope, we may be able to forward it to the more suitable organization to handle the complaint. If we need to pass your Personal Information on to a third party to help resolve the complaint, we will seek your permission first.

You can choose whether your Personal Information is included in the complaint when Ad Standards contacts the advertiser. The information entered in the database might be disclosed by Ad Standards to third parties.

If the Information is to be disclosed other than as set out above, we will contact you and provide the opportunity to choose not to have your Information disclosed.


How we protect your Personal Information

We have safeguards in place to help protect your Personal Information according to the sensitivity of the information we hold. Third parties who have access to your Personal Information in connection with providing services for Ad Standards are required to keep the information confidential and are not permitted to use such information for any other purpose.


Accuracy, Retention, and Access

Ad Standards retains your Personal Information for only as long as necessary for the fulfillment of the purposes for which the information was collected and for our legal obligations. We endeavour to ensure our records of your Personal Information are accurate, current, and complete. You have a right to access and amend our records of your Personal Information. If you would like to access or change your Personal Information in our records, please contact

Scroll to top