TCF – Transparency & Consent Framework

What is the Transparency & Consent Framework (TCF)? 

The IAB Europe Transparency and Consent Framework (TCF) is the only GDPR consent solution built by the industry for the industry, creating a true industry-standard approach. 

The TCF’s simple objective is to help all parties in the digital advertising chain ensure that they comply with the EU’s GDPR and ePrivacy Directive when processing personal data or accessing and/or storing information on a user’s device, such as cookies, advertising identifiers, device identifiers and other tracking technologies.

The TCF creates an environment where website publishers can tell visitors what data is being collected and how their website and the companies they partner with intend to use it. The TCF gives the publishing and advertising industries a common language with which to communicate consumer consent for the delivery of relevant online advertising and content. 

TCF v1.1 & v2.0 

On 25 April 2018, IAB Europe launched TCF v1 and on 21 August 2019, IAB Europe launched TCF v2. 

TCF Governance 

IAB Europe’s TCF Steering Group was created as an advisory group, holding IAB Europe as the managing organisation (MO) of the TCF, to account for the delivery of policies that will adhere to GDPR requirements. Chair: Thomas Mendrina (Xandr) and Vice-Chairs: Kate Teh (The Telegraph) & Benoit Oberlé (Sirdata).

The TCF Steering Group currently includes the following working groups (WG): 

  • Framework Policy Working Group – mandated to write and revise the TCF Policy. Chair: Christoph, Zippel (RTL Group) and Vice-Chair: Matthias Matthiesen (Qauntcast).  
  • Data Processing Purposes Working Group – mandated to write and revise the TCF Data Processing Purposes included in the TCF Policy 
  • DPA Outreach Working Group – mandated to raise awareness and understanding of the TCF to Data Protection Authorities across Europe and in the UK. Chair: Kimon Zorbas (Nielsen) and Vice-Chairs: Thomas Adhumeau (S4M) & Paula Ortiz (IAB Spain).  
  • Framework Signals Working Group – mandated to help registered CMPs and Vendors comply with the TCF Policy and the TCF Technical specifications. Chair: Grant Nelson (Xandr) 
  • Communications Working Group – mandated to leverage the TCF to external audiences to ensure understanding and market adoption. 

If you would like to join the IAB Europe Steering Group, please contact Colombe Michaud at

IAB Europe and IAB Tech Lab collaborate on the TCF on the basis of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). IAB Tech Lab is tasked with the maintenance and iteration of the technical specifications that underpin the TCF, with the support of the following groups: 

  • GDPR Commit Group – mandated with governing the technical specifications in the Framework.
  • GDPR Technical Working Group – mission is to share information on GDPR/ePrivacy and engage technical leaders in contributing to related solutions.

If you would like to join the IAB Tech Lab Working Group, please contact

TCF Key Components 

The TCF is a combination of key resources: 

  • TCF Policy 
  • TCF Terms & Conditions 
  • Transparency and Consent String with Global Vendor List Format 
  • The Consent Management Platform API 

In addition:

  • The Global Vendor List (GVL) managed by IAB Europe, captures and stores the registration of Vendors working with website publishers and advertisers, as well as Consent Management Platforms (CMPs) who work with publisher sites.
  • The CMP Validator is managed by IAB Europe and oversees the compliance process of CMPs participating in the TCF.
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