UK Government Amends Online Safety Bill; Forces Technology Companies to Tackle Scam Ads

Online Safety Bill on social media platforms
Social media platforms

The government wants technology companies to combat scam ads. The responsibility will be included in a revised Online Safety Bill. There were concerns that the regulation would cover damaging user-generated content but not detrimental ads and promotions.

Online Safety Bill

Platforms will be expected, as part of the legislation, to implement procedures to stop ads from appearing online and to remove them if they do. In order to better safeguard individuals from scams when criminals imitate celebrities or corporations in order to steal personal data, peddle risky investment products, or get into bank accounts, this notion was conceived.

According to BBC News, efforts to tighten laws governing online advertising are being put out to public input by the government. If social media influencers fail to report their compensation properly while promoting products online, they could face harsher fines.

Ad- and sponsorship-related hashtags are frequently used in postings, but research suggests that some Instagram stars may not be abiding by these guidelines. Ads that promote negative body images, for example, could be subject to stricter laws, although the specifics of those rules have yet to be worked out.

Failing to tackle scam adverts

As reported by Sky News, as a result of the new regulations, companies will be legally obligated to implement systems and processes that will help them detect and remove fraudulent advertising from their services as soon as they become aware of it. Online safety regulator Ofcom will make the final call on whether or not the government’s systems and procedures are appropriate.

Online businesses like Meta and Google, according to the MPs, should compensate consumers who have fallen victim to scams marketed on their platforms. The MPs, on the other hand, emphasized that the companies getting public advertising money to warn about these scams were not being compensated.

Between 2019 and 2021, the Financial Conduct Authority spent over $1.4 million on anti-scam advertisements on Google, Twitter, TikTok, and Meta.

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