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TAG Hires Former Citigroup Head of Threat Intelligence, Danielle Meah, as Director of Threat Intelligence

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Meah Will Lead Expansion of TAG Threat Sharing Program; TAG Releases New White Paper Outlining Best Practices for Companies to Stop Malvertising

The Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG), a self-regulatory advertising industry initiative to fight criminal activity in the digital advertising supply chain, announced the hiring of Danielle Meah, former Global Head of Threat Intelligence for Citigroup, as TAG’s first Director of Threat Intelligence.

In her new role, Meah will lead the TAG Threat Exchange and work with the industry to foster an effective threat-sharing culture. She will also direct TAG’s role as the ad industry’s first and only Information Sharing and Analysis Organization (ISAO), including expanding the work of the TAG Threat Exchange to rapidly identify threats to the digital advertising supply chain, share information on those threats across hundreds of companies, and work with law enforcement to investigate and prosecute the criminals involved.

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“In the eternal cat-and-mouse game between good guys and criminals, TAG just hired the Bengal tiger of threat intelligence,” said Mike Zaneis, CEO of TAG. “Danielle is a world-class expert on the tools and techniques used by criminals to exploit holes in the digital supply chain, and she will help TAG expand our threat intelligence and threat sharing capabilities to help the digital ad industry build a rapid reaction system that identifies, analyzes, and disseminates information on new and emerging threats.”

TAG also released a new White Paper, “Changing the Criminal Calculus: Best Practices in the Fight Against Malvertising,” which provides a comprehensive overview of the malvertising threat and the steps that companies should take to protect themselves and their partners. Among the best practices described in the White Paper, companies should:

Take responsibility and communicate their commitment by:

  • Creating and sustaining an internal focus on keeping ads free from malware.
  • Developing a “zero tolerance” policy for ads infected with malware.
  • Earning the TAG Certified Against Malware Seal to demonstrate the company has adopted the rigorous standards needed to fight malware

Choose the right partners through steps such as:

  • Knowing their risk tolerance and choosing partners that share and can accommodate those values.
  • Asking the right questions during the RFP process, for example, whether potential partners use malware scanning and real-time detection techniques.
  • Checking if partners have received the TAG Certified Against Malware Seal.

Work closely with partners to develop and execute their strategy by:

  • Designating a trained Brand Safety Officer within the company.
  • Documenting appropriate points of contact at partner companies.
  • Clearly communicating a plan to protect assets before a campaign launches.
  • Stay involved once campaigns are launched by ensuring proper mitigation strategies are in place to stop malvertising attacks at any point in a campaign.
See the bigger picture beyond each individual company by:
  • Providing partners with information about incidents of malware-infected creative, so they can be on the lookout for recurrences of those issues.
  • Supporting industry-wide threat sharing.

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“Malware and other supply chain threats cannot be effectively addressed by a single company working in a vacuum,” said Meah. “Like sentries in remote outposts, each company has only a partial view of the broader field of battle. By working together, however, our industry can scan the entire length of the supply chain in real-time, watching for emerging threats, then share that information through TAG with hundreds of other participating companies for action. I’m delighted to be joining TAG in this important role, as we expand our threat sharing efforts to build a safer medium.”

Over recent months, the TAG Threat Exchange has hosted engagement between security vendors and key adtech platforms to support collaboration and threat sharing around new malvertising and fraud threats, such as ICEPick-3PC/eGobbler (discovered by The Media Trust and Confiant), Tag Barnakle (discovered by Confiant), and Hydra (discovered by Protected Media).

TAG has also hosted larger briefings open to the entire TAG Community about timely “red flag” threats. In those briefings, TAG provides detailed analysis of and guidance on how to combat such threats in coordination with the companies that discover them. Over the years, such briefings have helped the industry collectively fight attacks including Methbot, 3ve, Drainerbot, ICEPick and others.

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Prior to joining TAG, Meah was Global Head of Threat Intelligence for Citigroup, leading a cross-regional team of intelligence analysts, collections management staff, and partnership and engagement specialists. In this role she was responsible for helping create an intelligence-led strategy with Citi’s security leadership to bolster the organization’s network defense posture.

Previously, Danielle held a variety of roles developing cyber intelligence capabilities in both the public and private sector. She was Collections Manager and Director of Operations for Booz Allen Hamilton’s cyber intelligence service. She also worked as a cyber threat analyst for LookingGlass and the U.S. China Economic and Security Review Commission. She began her career as a Chinese linguist and cyber policy fellow for the US federal government.

Danielle earned a Master of Science in Digital Forensics and Incident Response from George Washington University and a Bachelor of Arts from Hamilton College in Chinese and World Politics. She is a registered Private Investigator in the state of Virginia and holds a Global Certified Incident Handler (GCIH) certification.

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