Software Giant Microsoft Bing follows Facebook, Google in Banning Cryptocurrency Ads
May 16, 2018 11:53 am
Search Engine Bing joins Facebook and Google in Prohibiting Digital Currency Ads
Following Facebook and Google’s path, Microsoft’s Bing search engine will no longer display advertisements of digital currency, related products, and unregulated binary choices. The news comes by way of a short post on the Bing Ads blog that states the change will be made to Microsoft global financial product and services policies in June preceding to a total ban of these ads in late June or early July.
Advertiser Policy Manager, Melissa Alsoszatai-Petheo, stated:
“Because digital currency and related products are not regulated, we have found them to present a possible elevated risk to our users, with the potential for bad actors to participate in predatory behaviours, or otherwise scam consumers. To help protect our users from this risk, we have decided to disallow advertising.”
Digital currency along with the related services and product follow other “legally questionable business opportunities” on Microsoft’s embargo list, like a pyramid scheme, Ponzi scheme, and investments that depend on adding participants to a scheme. For example, an ad can state “Save more of your money,” followed by “learn this money-saving tip and save more.” A different version would say something like: “Save your money today,” followed by “sign up for this secret or risk losing your savings.”
Microsoft’s Bing Ads policies now prohibit cryptocurrencies that are designed to expedite illegal purpose. Cases include avoiding applicable taxes, money laundering, and the advertisement of fake/forged cryptocurrencies.
In January, Facebook proposed a similar prohibition on its social network. As per the company, ads are not authorized to “promote financial products and services that are frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices, such as binary options, initial coin offerings, or cryptocurrency.” The company said its new policy is deliberately broad.
Facebook product management director, Mr. Rob Leathern said:
“We want people to continue to explore and learn about new products and services through Facebook ads without fear of scams or cheating. That said, many companies are advertising binary options, ICOs, and digital currencies that are not currently operating in good faith.”
In March, Google declared a similar move, asserting that all advertisements related to digital currency and unregulated investments will be prohibited from Adwords advertisement platform. Digital currencies are not regulated, so investors have no assurance of safe, honest trading despite market claims. Plus there’s a rising trend of digital currency startups making cash through initial coin offering (ICO), and then fleeing with the funds.
The cost of one bitcoin reached an all-time high on December 16, 2017, at just over $19,000 but since then fallen to $8,203.88 as of 16th May 2018. The lowest point of the year thus far was $6,620 in April. In February, Ethereum Co-founder Vitalik Buterin said that digital currencies are hyper-volatile assets and not ideal for long-term investments. But digital currency craze continues, stringing along scam artists looking for keen investors.
Melissa Alsoszatai-Petheo said:
“We are always evaluating our policies to ensure a safe and engaging experience for our Bing users and the digital advertising ecosystem.”