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More than 5 million crypto-related ads blocked by Microsoft’s Bing in 2018

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Bing (Microsoft-owned search engine and advertisement platform) revealed in its “Ad quality year in review 2018” report that it blocked more than 5 million crypto-related ads. Bing notes that cryptos’ pseudo-anonymity “made cryptocurrency a prime target for fraudsters and scam artists to defraud end-users.” Bing claims that this is the major reason for their banning of crypto-related content from its advertising platform that led to the blocking of more than five million ads.


Bing also noted that its ban against the advertisement of weapons led to the blocking of more than 18 million ads along with more than 5000 websites. The company also added that its fight against tech scams has resulted in the closure of more than 12,000 Bing Ads accounts. In May 2018, Bing along with other internet giants announced that crypto-related ads would be banned on its network by July 2018.


In an official post, the company then stated that:


Because cryptocurrency 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 behaviors, or otherwise scam consumers.


Before Bing took action, Facebook placed a ban on crypto ads in January 2018, same as Google in March 2018. Twitter was next, placing a ban on adverts for initial coin offerings (ICO) and token sales. While the firms have initially introduced bans on contents relating to crypto, these policies have not reflected the thoughts of their top executives.


Jack Dorsey (the CEO of Twitter) is a vocal advocate of Bitcoin. Mark Zuckerberg (the CEO of Facebook) has also expressed his interest in digital assets, telling CNBC in 2018 that:


There are important counter-trends to this, like encryption and cryptocurrency, that take power from centralized systems and put it back into people's hands. I'm interested to go deeper and study the positive and negative aspects of these technologies, and how best to use them in our services.


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