FRONT PAGE: Web tool firm in PR fightback

The company behind a controversial web tracking device has brought in heavyweight PR support as it struggles against a tidal wave of negative coverage.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee
Sir Tim Berners-Lee

Phorm has taken on Freuds, Citigate Dewe Rogerson and ex-House of Commons media adviser John Stonborough in a last-ditch attempt to save its reputation. The company recently hired former Yahoo head of European PR David Sawday as its head of comms.

Phorm tracks a user's browsing activity and sends on the details to third-party internet service providers.

This week there was a spate of critical coverage, inc­luding allegations that such tracking technology breaches privacy rights.

The British inventor of the world wide web Sir Tim Berners-Lee told the BBC: ‘I want to know that, if I look up books about some form of cancer, it's not going to get to my insurance company, and I'm not going to find my ins­urance premium going up by five per cent.'

Berners-Lee did not mention Phorm by name.

The company defended its product, with Sawday insisting: ‘It's the gold standard in terms of privacy.' He added that Phorm would be contacting Berners-Lee in an attempt to win him over.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.