In 2022, Google removed over 5.2 billion ads, restricted over 4.3 billion ads and suspended over 6.7 million advertiser accounts, according to Google’s Ads Safety report.
This represents an increase of 2 billion more ads removed in 2022 from the previous year.
Google also blocked or restricted ads from serving on over 1.5 billion publisher pages and took broader site-level enforcement action on over 143,000 publisher sites.
In 2022, Google added or updated 29 policies for advertisers and publishers. “This included expanding our financial services verification program to 10 new countries, expanding protections for teens and strengthening our elections ads policies,” said Alejandro Borgia, Director, Product Management, Ad Safety at Google.
“To enforce our policies at this scale, we rely on a combination of human reviews and automated systems powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning. This helps sort through the content and better detect violations across the globe,” the blog post further read.
Google has announced the launch of a new transparency tool, the Ads Transparency Center, a searchable repository of verified advertisers across all of its platforms, including Search, Display, and YouTube, that lets people search for a particular advertiser and view the advertiser page.
Protecting users from fraud and scams
In 2022 Google expanded its financial services certification program which requires advertisers to demonstrate that they are authorised by their local regulator to promote their products and services. To date, Google has launched this program in 11 countries including the United Kingdom, Australia, and Singapore.
Overall, in 2022, Google blocked or removed 142 million advertisements for violating its misrepresentation policy and 198 million advertisements for violating its financial services policy.
Blocking and removing harmful content and combating misinformation
In recent years, Google has developed measures to tackle misinformation and unreliable claims in our advertising ecosystem. This includes policies against harmful health claims and demonstrably false claims that could undermine trust and participation in elections. It has also developed an industry-leading policy against climate change denial. In 2022, it blocked ads from running on over 300,000 publisher pages that violated these policies and blocked over 24 million policy-violating ads from serving. In addition, it blocked and removed over 51.2 million ads for inappropriate content including hate speech, violence and harmful health claims and 20.6 million ads for dangerous products or services such as weapons and explosives.
Google expanded its verification and transparency program for election ads, verifying over 5,900 new advertising accounts in the US and over 2,300 in Brazil. Election ads from these advertisers included disclosures that showed who paid for the ads and also appeared in its Political Advertising on Google Transparency Report. Google also blocked over 2.6 million election ads that came from advertisers who had not completed our required verification process.
Responding to the war in Ukraine
Following the start of the war in Ukraine, Google acted quickly to prohibit ads that exploit, dismiss or condone the war. Google also paused the majority of our commercial activities in Russia across our products. It paused ads from showing in Russia along with ads from Russian-based advertisers and paused monetisation of Russian state-funded media across our platforms.
Google blocked more than 17 million ads related to the war in Ukraine under its sensitive event policy. Separately, its removed ads from more than 275 state-funded media sites across our platforms.