In light of recent news about Facebook exaggerating its audience reach in most countries, the IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) in Australia is encouraging marketers to capture metrics using third-party data source such as Nielsen rather than Facebook’s Ad Manager tool, AdNews has reported.

The social media giant has been under scrutiny for over calculating its estimated reach of 15-39 year-olds in Australia, with numbers exceeding the actual population of this demographic in the region by 1.7 million. An AdNews study also found discrepancies in nine out of 12 markets, including the US.

In response to the issue, Facebook explained its estimates take into account elements such as short-term visitors, and advised advertisers not to compare the numbers to official census data.

“These numbers are designed to provide an idea of your campaign’s potential reach. They are not meant to be an actual accounting of Facebook’s active users and are not designed to match population or census estimates,” an email from the social media platform to buyers read.

However, IAB Australia told AdNews that Nielsen figures represent “the cleanest digital currency” in reflecting reach, as its data considers duplicate accounts and fake user information.

“The investment in both time and money that the industry puts into the IAB-endorsed digital currency via Nielsen gives the market a robust and independent measuring stick to review all media players,” the body stated.

Facebook has long been pressured by the industry to improve the regulation of its advertising under the watch of third parties, following a high profile error in which it miscalculated ad impressions and misvalued conversions.