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Google prohibits ads for snooping products and services



Illustration for article titled Google Bans Ads for Snooping Products and Services

photo:: Alastair Pike (Getty Images)

Google’s ban on advertisements for so-called “StalkerwareApps, invasive programs that are mostly associated with jealous exes or abusive partners to spy on another person without their permission. However, the online search giant has already said goodbye a general ban Against stalkerware apps in the Play Store, you have to ask yourself why such ads were allowed from the start.

Better late than never, I guess.

In a (n Ad Policy Update This week, Google announced that, starting August 11, ads for products or services that are marketed for the secret pursuit or surveillance of individuals will be banned. This includes, but is not limited to:

Spyware and partner monitoring technology, including but not limited to spyware / malware, that can be used to monitor text, phone calls, or browsing history; GPS trackers that are specifically marketed to spy or track someone without their consent; Advertising for surveillance devices (cameras, audio recorders, dash cams, nanny cams) that are marketed with the express purpose of espionage.

Essentially any type of digital surveillance technology that depends on the person being observed not knowing what’s going on. Exceptions to this prohibition are apps and services for private investigations and helicopter parents who want to monitor their underage children.

Advertisers who don’t follow this new policy will be banned with a warning of at least seven days in advance.

Google has stepped up efforts to solve its stalkerware problem, especially afterwards a study from 2018 Thousands of hidden surveillance technology ads were targeted to people who wanted to track their significant other online. Ads discovered included ads on the nose such as “How to Catch a Fraudulent Spouse on Your Cell Phone” and “Tracking My Wife’s Phone – Would You Like to Spy on Your Wife?” Chase your wife without her knowing. “

Google has taken steps to prevent these ads from appearing for some of the more harmful search terms that an abuser might use, but many continue to slip through the cracks. Despite the general ban on the App Store, the company may occasionally Rinse batches Stalkerware apps from the Play Store that failed to be tagged.

The sad thing is that these stalkerware apps are a common problem for a reason. A NortonLifeLock study The study published in February found that almost half of Americans admitted to following a partner or ex in some form on the Internet. These methods included sniffing on the partner’s phone, creating a fake profile to track him on social media, or using an app to secretly monitor their online activity and location data – with men more than twice as likely to cyberstalking -Apps are dependent on women.


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