NEWS3 June 2009

Lawyers cry foul over demise of behavioural targeting firm NebuAd

Legal North America Privacy UK

US— Lawyers for a group of consumers suing defunct behavioural targeting firm NebuAd are refusing to accept reports of its demise – claiming it is all an illusion.

In court filings plaintiffs’ counsel alleges that NebuAd is “simply restarting with a new name” – that of UK-based ad solutions firm Insight Ready.

As pointed out in our report of 20 May, calls to NebuAd’s UK office that day were answered by a company called Insight Ready, whose website – – was registered in November 2008 by NebuAd of Foster City, California.

Since that day, however, repeated calls made by <I>Research</I> to that same number have gone unanswered, while all content has been removed from the company’s website. Only the ‘.com’ version of the domain – which was registered in April this year by Insight Ready Limited of Sussex, England – remains active.

“NebuAd is in the process of winding down its operations, having recently executed a general assignment for the benefit of creditors, but NebuAd is not really going anywhere,” the lawyers allege. “This scenario is all too familiar to anyone who has followed the online advertising industry generally and NebuAd specifically.”

The lawyers claim that NebuAd was launched by several former executives of behavioural advertising company Gator Corporation, which was set up in 1998 but changed its name to Claria in 2003. Claria in turn shuttered its operations in June 2006, and NebuAd was born soon after – “run by many of Claria’s former executives”, the lawyers said.

NebuAd and the internet service providers that trialled its behavioural targeting technology are being sued by a group of consumers who claim their online activity was monitored without their consent.

Lawyers for NebuAd have sought to stay proceedings against the firm in light of its demise.