Google to prohibit spyware and surveillance technology ads

Google | July 15, 2020

Starting August 11 of this year, Google Ads will be denying advertising for anything designed at “spyware and surveillance technology.” It’s technically an update to the Enabling Dishonest Behavior policy, and will apply to both search and shopping. What is the Enabling Dishonest Behavior Policy? Historically, the policy has focused on on dishonesty in many forms, but they mostly fall into things that mislead others, or those that let users get unauthorized access to physical objects. Specific Product Types on Notice. While Google notes the list provided isn’t exhaustive, they give examples and caveats to exactly what this will apply to. Google specifies that spyware and tech used for “intimate partner surveillance” will be prohibited. Examples include software that monitor texts, phone calls and internet browsing. It also includes hardware, such as GPS trackers meant to spy without consent, or cameras/recorders marketed with the purpose of spying without consent. Exceptions to this rule allow for private investigation service ads, and products made for parents to track underage children.

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