Meta will be cut off from Starling because of its failure to deal with fake financial advertisements.
Anne Boden, Starling’s CEO and founder, declared that her firm will no longer pay for ads on Facebook and Instagram while impostors are targeting its customers. Boden said:
“We want to protect our customers and our brand integrity. And we can no longer pay to advertise on a platform alongside scammers who are going after the savings of our customers and those of other banks.”
The U.K government was under the pressure of Boden. She insists on addressing financial fraud in the Online Safety Bill. However, the Bill would place a duty of care on companies such as Meta or Google. They will be required to take action against illegal content. Those companies which do not comply with that rule, will be obliged to pay penalties of £18 million ($24 million) or 10% of their annual global revenues.
About five months ago, Google put an end to accepting ads for financial services which are not authorized by the FCA.
In December Meta engaged itself to tighten its policies on financial advertising. It is expected that it will make the changes later this year. A Meta spokesperson commented:
“Promoting financial scams is against our policies and we’re dedicating significant resources to tackling this industry-wide issue on and off our platforms.”
They also added:
“To fight this, we work not just to detect and reject scam ads on our services, but also block advertisers. While no enforcement is perfect, we continue to invest in new technologies and methods to protect people on our service from these scams.”
Boden hopes that Facebook’s plans will not distract the company from doing “the right” thing in the UK this year.