A Record 100M+ Life-Saving AMBER Alert Impressions in July & August, Using Conversant’s Technology

Through FIA’s efforts, and with the help of Conversant’s technology, people are engaging at record levels to help find children in grave danger.

In July and August, more than 100 million FIA Partner dynamic AMBER Alert messages were served to 27.8 million devices. This record number resulted in 163,970 people downloading AMBER Alert posters concerning a child abduction in their area.

In AMBER Alert’s early beginnings in the late 1990s, its system worked well enough, announcing abduction details in local areas via radio and television broadcasts. But as people spent more time on their computers, phones and tablets, there was a huge opportunity to reach far more people, faster, online.

In 2011, FIA Partners started sending life-saving alerts to the devices of people in target areas with the help of Conversant (now part of Epsilon), one of FIA’s founders. The partnership makes perfect sense: With our powerful platform, we’re able to identify and reach 145 million verified people, nationwide, with an accuracy rate of 95%. FIA has the life-saving information; we have the audience that can be reached in real time.

When law enforcement requests an all-media call to action, the massive system goes into effect automatically. It triggers a chain reaction across ad platforms, as Conversant notifies other FIA Partners electronically within milliseconds.

And FIA continues to expand its partners and the types of all-hazard, all-media threats this technology can respond to globally.

In July and August, our partnership broke records, becoming the largest delivery months on record:

  • 100M+ AMBER Alert dynamic messages were served by FIA and its partners.
  • 27.8M unique devices received AMBER Alerts.
  • 163,970 AMBER Alert posters were downloaded by people who clicked on alerts.

Our continued partnership—which earned a Webby Award in April—will bring more life-saving alerts into the hands of the people who need them the most, precisely when they need them.

Contributed by Raju Malhotra, SVP Product Management, Conversant

Amber…Could Have Been Saved

Amber…Could Have Been Saved. Five powerful words that represent a mission we are so proud to be part of. I had the privilege of sitting next to Sheriff Dee Anderson, founder of AMBER Alerts, in New York City as the Sheriff gave his acceptance speech at the Webby Award Ceremony on behalf of the Federation for Internet Alerts (FIA) in the Advertising & Media’s Public Service & Activism category. The Webby Awards, which recognize excellence on the Internet, is known for their 5-word acceptance speeches and I can’t think of a more powerful way to express the meaning behind the work we are doing with FIA.

It was an honor to have Sherriff Anderson and Senior Investigator Gary Kelly of the New York State Police Special Victims Unit and New York State AMBER Alert Coordinator join us to hear firsthand accounts about the impact FIA has on helping to save lives. NYPD Commander Lieutenant Christopher Zimmerman was supposed to join us at the reception. However, due to an unexpected police emergency he was unable to attend. This was a strong reminder to me about how our efforts to help law enforcement officials do their jobs is a serious responsibility and of immense importance to them as they work very hard to protect the public.  These heroes risk their lives every day protecting our families.

While it was an honor to be the winner of the 2015 People’s Voice Webby Award, as the lights dimmed on the Webby stage I quickly realized that the mission remains, and the light shines ever brighter, to distribute life-saving information in real-time and get these messages in front of the right people, at the right time. Earlier this week we announced the expansion of the global emergency communications network with the addition of new partners and are pleased to have AOL, AppNexus, Rocket Fuel and xAd join FIA to significantly increase the reach and global impact of the network, which now delivers 30 billion real-time messages each day worldwide.

When Sheriff Anderson founded AMBER Alerts in 1996, he said he never imagined being able to communicate these alerts to millions of people in real-time in the way we are doing it. The coalition of ad technology companies, networks and exchanges that have come together to support this initiative is a true testament to the industry’s commitment to using technology and data for good. As I told Sheriff Dee Anderson, on behalf of FIA, I am very proud to share this commitment with others as well, and when there is an AMBER Alert we will be there in full force.

There’s still a lot more that needs to be done and I look forward to continuing to extend the reach and global impact of FIA.

Contributed by Bryan Kennedy Chief Executive Epsilon/Conversant

5-Word Webbys Recap

FIA at The Webby Awards

“Amber Could Have Been Saved” is the 5-word speech given last night by Sheriff Dee Anderson in New York City as he…

Posted by Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday, May 19, 2015

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Amber Alerts: Creating a Better Internet Through Social Responsibility

As the CEO of the world’s largest independent ad tech company whose mission is to create a better Internet, I am constantly looking for opportunities to leverage our voice, our dollars, and our technology for social good. I am inspired by how often I see people take to the Internet to rally around valuable causes, whether raising awareness, funding research, or celebrating the accomplishments of others. Today, AppNexus takes part in an incredibly important initiative to help protect one of our most precious and most vulnerable groups: our children.

Many of you know that since AMBER Alerts were first instituted in 1996, they have been broadcast nationwide to inform the public and law enforcement about missing or abducted children. Deployed via radio, billboards, TV stations, and SMS, AMBER Alerts have resulted in the rescue of more than 650 children. Recently, in an effort to capitalize on the Internet’s reach and scope, AMBER Alerts have been broadcast across new channels, including Facebook.

The Federation for Internet Alerts (FIA) recently announced that AOL, AppNexus, Rocket Fuel and xAd have joined its roster of partners. This expanded coalition will significantly extend the reach and global impact of the network, which now serves more than 30 billion real time messages each day worldwide, not only for AMBER Alerts but also for other regional emergencies including severe weather events. FIA has brought more than 500 million dynamic AMBER Alert impressions to more than 100 million devices during 686 abductions, driving record traffic to AMBER Alert posters on the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s website that can be shared or printed to assist in locating the child.

Nothing is more important than the safety of our children, and AppNexus is committed to leveraging our technology to help protect them. It is FIA’s mission, and now ours, to “make every second count” with these real time alerts. We are grateful to FIA for the important work it does, and are proud to partner with them on our journey to create a better Internet.

Contributed by Brian O’Kelley, CEO at AppNexus

We’re in NYC for the Webby’s

The team has arrived in NYC for the big day. As stated in our last blog, FIA won the 2015 People’s Voice Webby Award for Advertising & Media for Public Service & Activism. We are humbled to be part of the award ceremony and are even more excited about the potential this exposure will bring to FIA and our mission.

While our cause is serious, this is a night of celebration hosted by comedian Hannibal Buress. The awards will feature a wide range of winners from Ellie Kemper for her performance in The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt to Louis Rossetto and Jane Metcalfe of Wired Magazine. It’s sure to be a night to remember. We invite you to tune into The Webby’s YouTube channel tomorrow, Tuesday, May 19th for coverage of the event. Be sure to look for our smiling faces.

Congrats to all the winners, we’ll see you tonight!

Contributed by Emily Marron, Copywriter at Conversant


xAd + FIA: Real-Time Accuracy When It Matters Most

You know the feeling in the pit of your stomach when you can’t find something important. Maybe it’s your house keys or your wedding band or your cellphone. Whatever it is that’s missing, it sets you off down a trail of questions. “Where is it?” “What was I last doing?” “Where would I have put it?” Until you find what you’re missing –you’re tormented. Now try to imagine what that feeling of torment and panic would be like if it wasn’t an object missing – it was your child. In this type of situation, nothing matters more than finding your child, and now the latest in mobile technology can help you do just that.

When a child goes missing, the most important time to find them is within the first 48 hours. From then on, the odds are against you. Given this short window for successful recovery, the ability to reach those around the abduction site and local community are crucial. We know that speed and accuracy matters in a recovery situation like this and xAd can help: in less than half the time it takes to blink an eye (80 milliseconds), xAd can provide tailored messages to audiences in a distinct local area within an accuracy of up to 50m.

AMBER Alerts have used geographically targeted information to reach people through the radio, TV, road signs, and online. However, abductions often take place when the child is out of the home. As a result, these media have limited ability to reach individuals who are nearby the abduction site. xAd can reach individuals on their mobile devices, differentiating whether someone was at the location of interest, designated area during the incident or within the search vicinity perimeter. xAd enables AMBER alerts to provide the most accurate messages to people who can help recover a child during the time that matters most.

The AMBER Alerts (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) system was created in 1996 in Texas, and became a national effort in 2002.

As consumers’ behavior shifted, AMBER alerts expanded to online advertising, thanks in part to Federation for Internet Alerts (FIA). Since launching in May 2011, FIA, in partnership with NCMEC, has delivered almost 400 million dynamic AMBER Alert impressions, served to millions of people in the designated areas.

As members of FIA, xAd will leverage its location technology platform to reach two-thirds of the smartphone users in the U.S. monthly, through 30,000+ apps and across up to 300 billion available impressions. With the scale of mobile device penetration and precision of location data, xAd enables AMBER Alerts to automatically reach people in the targeted areas.

On behalf of xAd, we’re proud to be a partner of FIA and NCMEC to help prevent and recover abducted children – doing important work for years to come.

Contributed by Monica Ho, Head of Marketing Infrastructure at xAd

What Would You Do?

When I was a kid, a friend’s little brother was abducted by a stranger. A group of us were playing in the park after school and suddenly Keith wasn’t there. Instead, Keith got into the back of a van idling nearby and drove off with a stranger. We ran home and told the grown ups what happened, “Keith got into a car with a stranger and they drove away.” Police were called, a search took place, and fortunately the ending of the story was a happy one for Keith and his parents.

Years later, I’m the grown up and there’s nothing more important to me than my kids. I do as much as I can to make them happy, help them succeed, and most importantly, keep them safe. I can’t imagine hearing a more terrifying sentence than the one we delivered to Keith’s parents. As terrifying as it is to think about my child being abducted, I know I wouldn’t want to rely on milk cartons or phone trees to get them back. I’d want to utilize the most technologically advanced resources possible, send messages to anyone who might have seen them, and find people where they’d have no choice but to look. If you’re a parent, and reading this, imagine how you’d feel and what you’d do.

Thankfully, there is technology that can help in these frightening situations where minutes count, and it’s sitting on most desks, or residing on most persons in America. According to a Kleiner-Perkins study published last year, Americans spend an average of over three hours a day on their smartphones, plus another hour and a half on their personal computers. So if you want to get an important message through to someone, catching them in front of one of these devices is the way to do it.

According to a recent Interactive Advertising Bureau study, advertisers spent $12.4 Billion in the third quarter of 2014 alone. The number keeps growing quarter over quarter, year after year, because digital advertising is an incredibly effective way for brands to reach the right customer, in the right place, at the right time. The billions prove it. FIA is how we can put this same, effective technology to work for as important a cause as I can imagine – our kids.

By partnering with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Internet technology companies use their resources to do what they’re best at – getting important messages out to the right people. The NCMEC provides a picture of the missing child, and information about a vehicle that might be involved in their abduction, and ad technology companies spread the word. This timely messaging increases the chances of finding someone’s child and returning them home to their parents.

The fact that business rivals put healthy competition aside to help reunite parents with missing children demonstrates the difference FIA makes in our communities. Our collective efforts and donations of our technology and ingenuity make the world a better and safer place everyday.


Contributed by Ari Levenfeld, Sr. Director of Privacy and Inventory Quality at Rocket Fuel Inc.