Google announced that it will ban all cryptocurrencies and binary options adverts in an attempt to weed out any forms of speculative financial instruments, the company announced on Wednesday.
Google Director of Sustainable Ads, Scott Spencer, said in a blog post that the company has updated its policies as to address ads in “unregulated or speculative financial products”. The post exemplified such products including cryptocurrency, foreign exchange markets, and contract for difference (CFDs).
Google’s decision follows closely in the footsteps of social media platform, Facebook, which is also banning cryptocurrency related advertising from its platform. According to Spencer, the latest cryptocurrency crackdown is part of the company’s efforts to protect users from “online scams”.
The tech company is also eyeing ads for contracts for difference, spread betting, and foreign exchange products on its platform.
CFDs and spread bets allow people to bet on the price movement of assets without actually owning said products. People who use these financial instruments can gain exposure to stocks or metals without having to pay the fees associated with actually buying them.
Such products have been criticized in Europe over the past year. The Financial Conduct Authority in the UK cautioned people in November that cryptocurrency CFDs “are extremely high-risk, speculative products”, that can lead to massive financial losses. According to the FCA, 82 percent of people who use the products lose money, which suggests that CFDs are more gamble-oriented.
Google claims that it will ban ads from affiliates and aggregators who dabble in this market. In addition, the search giant will require CFD, spread bet, and foreign exchange providers to register with the platform if they want to advertise on it. However, all providers need to be licensed in their own country before doing so.
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