Google bans crypto and ICO ads, requires certification for Forex and CFD ads


Google bans crypto and ICO ads, requires certification for Forex and CFD ads

In a new Google Adwords Advertising Policy blog post titled Financial Services: New restricted financial products policy (see full text below), online giant Google let the world know what had been speculated on for a while – that it was going to ban ads for cryptocurrencies, as part of its plan to ‘clean up’ digital advertising.

The ban includes any Adwords ads for initial coin offerings (ICOs), cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets, and cryptocurrency trading advice.

The ban will take effect in three months, in June 2018.

What was interesting to us and less expected, beyond the expected crypto and ICO ad ban, was that Google ‘lumped in’ the entire world of Forex and CFD advertising into its new advertising policy.

Beginning in June, all ads for online trading – Forex, CFDs and financial spread betting – will be required to be certified by Google before they can advertise through AdWords.

Ads for Binary Options will be banned altogether.

Google explained itself in a separate blog post entitled An advertising ecosystem that works for everyone, stating that:

We’re constantly updating our policies as we see new threats emerge. Last year, we added 28 new advertiser policies and 20 new publisher policies to combat new threats and improve the ads experience online. This year, we updated several policies to address ads in unregulated or speculative financial products like binary options, cryptocurrency, foreign exchange markets and contracts for difference (or CFDs). We also updated our gambling ads policies to address new methods of gambling with items that have real-world value (e.g., skins gambling). And we will introduce a new certification process for rehabilitation facilities, allowing legitimate addiction treatment centers to connect with people in need.

Our work to protect the ads ecosystem doesn’t stop here—it’s ongoing. As consumer trends evolve, as our methods to protect the open web get better, so do online scams. Improving the ads experience across the web, whether that’s removing harmful ads or intrusive ads, will continue to be a top priority for us.

The full text of the new Google Adwords policy note reads as follows:


Financial Services: New restricted financial products policy (June 2018)

In June 2018, Google will update the Financial services policy to restrict the advertisement of Contracts for Difference, rolling spot forex, and financial spread betting. In addition, ads for the following will no longer be allowed to serve:

  • Binary options and synonymous products
  • Cryptocurrencies and related content (including but not limited to initial coin offerings, cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets, and cryptocurrency trading advice)

Ads for aggregators and affiliates for the following will no longer be allowed to serve:

  • Contracts for Difference
  • Rolling spot forex
  • Financial spread betting
  • Binary options and synonymous products
  • Cryptocurrencies and related content.

Advertisers offering Contracts for Difference, rolling spot forex, and financial spread betting will be required to be certified by Google before they can advertise through AdWords. Certification is only available in certain countries.

To be certified by Google, advertisers will need to:

  • Be licensed by the relevant financial services authority in the country or countries they are targeting
  • Ensure their ads and landing pages comply with all AdWords policies
  • Comply with relevant legal requirements, including those related to complex speculative financial products

Advertisers can request certification with Google starting March 2018 when the application form is published.

This policy will apply globally to all accounts that advertise these financial products.

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Google bans crypto and ICO ads, requires certification for Forex and CFD ads

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