Banned: Google removes 524 million ads

Google has released its yearly review Fighting Bad Advertising Practices. In this it reports to have disabled over 524 million ads and banned over 214,000 advertisers from its search results during 2014.

Back in 2012, Google said it was fighting a continuous battle against a number of 'bad actors' from "fraudulent tickets to underground international operations trying to spread malware and spyware."

The Google engineer Sridhar Ramaswamy said that as advertisers submit billions of advertisements to the website, Google must use a combination of technological tools and human intervention in order to combat the volume of malicious ads that appear.

Combating the bad ads of today

Google has shown how it uses an automated system to combat the number of bad ads on its platform.

Taking an example ad for rental properties, Google said most people would assume these were legitimate. But the system had flagged the ads for review.

The director of ads engineering at Google, Vikaram Gupta, said: "After we dug in deeper, we discovered that the system was right to be suspicious - the vacation rentals turned out to be a scam and the rental properties didn't exist."

He added that the technique had helped Google to tackle many more bad actors on the web:

  • 7,000 advertisers for promoting counterfeit goods

 

  • 2.5 million ads for promoting outrageous claims for dietary and weight loss supplements

 

  • 250,000 sites from its network for hiding malware

Combating the bad ads of tomorrow

Gupta said: "Bad actors continually create more sophisticated systems and scams, so we too are continually evolving our practices, technology, and methodology in fighting these bad ads".

He stressed Google's commitment to keep its platform clean and stop bad advertising practices, as many legitimate businesses rely on the platform for their advertisements.

Talking about the kind of advertisement Google backs, Ramaswamy said: "We believe ads that are useful... can help you find what you’re looking for online—whether you’re comparing digital cameras or researching new cars."

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