Paid-for advertising is one of the most popular ways fraudsters target their victims. If the UK is to be the safest place to be online, the Online Safety Bill must include paid-for scam ads.
This week we’re calling on Nadine Dorries, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, to ensure that protections against scam ads are featured in the Online Safety Bill.
Fraudsters are continuing to buy space on online platforms to scam us through fake ads and fraudulent websites. According to Which? research in 2020, nearly 1 in 10 of us in the UK have been scammed by fake ads on social media or a search engine.
These scams cause both financial and emotional damage. We have heard from people whose confidence and trust in others has been shaken to its core.
One woman who lost £30,000 to an investment scam featured on Google told us how she continues to feel shame and despair months later. “It breaks you as a person,” she said.
The problem is growing as fraudsters get smarter. Fraudsters know how to make fake or fraudulent content appear legitimate, including by drawing people in using fake celebrity endorsements.
Make tech giants take responsibility
People should be able to go online without fear of being scammed. Yet tech giants and social media companies are continuing to profit from the paid for scam ads that scanners are placing on their sites.
This is wrong. These companies must be made to do more to stop online scams. They must be made legally responsible for preventing this type of content from being posted to their sites in the first place.
Since paid for scam ad ads are one of the most common causes of online scams, paid for advertising must be included in the Online Safety Bill so we can tackle this injustice now.
Help us send a message to Nadine
Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries is about to make a huge decision on whether or not to include paid for advertising in the Online Safety Bill. We want you to help to make our call stronger.
If you agree that paid for advertising must be included in the Online Safety Bill, please show your support by sending a message via Twitter:
I agree with @WhichUK – if @nadinedorries wants to #StopOnlineScams then tech giants must be made responsible for preventing scam ads from appearing on their sites. To protect us all, online scam ads must be part of the Online Safety Bill.Tweet
Share with others
Why do you feel paid-for scam ads should be included in the Online Safety Bill? What would you say to others to get them on board?
Share your thoughts in the comments below.