Thursday 23 April 2020 4:40 pm

Google forces advertisers to prove identity in transparency push

Google today said it will require all advertisers to complete a verification process before buying ad space on its platform as the tech giant looks to improve transparency.

In a blog post published today, Google said advertisers will need to submit personal identification, business incorporation documents or other information that proves who they are and the country in which they operate. 

The platform had previously only required verification for political advertisers running ads during an election.

It comes amid a rise in the number of campaigns from low-quality advertisers exploiting the coronavirus crisis to promote fraudulent products such as fake masks and vaccines.

Google said it would start by verifying advertisers in the US, before expanding the service worldwide over the next few years.

From this summer users will be able to view disclosures about advertisers by clicking on ads.

“This change will make it easier for people to understand who the advertiser is behind the ads they see from Google and help them make more informed decisions when using our advertising controls,” John Canfield, director of product management for ads integrity, wrote in the post.

“It will also help support the health of the digital advertising ecosystem by detecting bad actors and limiting their attempts to misrepresent themselves.”