Tool keeps score on Web traffic

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An Internet traffic-measurement tool introduced in July will enable government agencies to find out not only how Web surfers are using their sites, but also what pages they visit the rest of the time they are logged on.

ComScore Networks Inc. created govScore to help analyze e-government initiatives, said Tammy Jaffer, general manager of the company's newly created government solutions group. It's the only Internet traffic-measurement service designed to serve agencies by providing insight into the behavior of visitors to government sites, Jaffer said.

Government agencies that depend on e-government initiatives can use the data to see how visitors use their sites and to benchmark performance against comparable sites.

"GovScore allows an agency to understand not only what's going on with their Web site with user analysis, but understand what's going on outside the Web site," Jaffer said. "It provides a 360-degree behavioral view of what visitors do."

GovScore uses comScore's global network of more than 1.5 million opt-in users to capture Internet traffic and transaction activity on federal, state and local government Web sites. Users who opt in do not receive any financial compensation but do benefit from a doubling of download speeds on their computers, Jaffer said.

"We've talked to a number of major federal agencies, and they're very interested in this information," she said.

ComScore keeps its users' personal information confidential and is one of only about 25 companies to receive Ernst & Young's Cyber Seal of Approval for privacy, Jaffer said.

GovScore is available for an annualsubscription of $24,000 and can be customized for an agency based on the depth and length of the services it wants, she said. Once an agency signson, users are given a password, and access to the tracking information is instantaneous.

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