Facebook Investigates Bitcoin Advertisements Dodging Platform’s Ban on Cryptocurrency Ads
The social media giant is investigating bitcoin advertisements that have been bypassing the recent ban on crypto ads on the platform. Last week, it banned all publicity that promoted financial products like Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and digital currencies. According to experts, the ban was not employed with perfection, as some users reported to see crypto ads after the ban.
Misspells Evade Facebook Ban
Matthieu Suiche, Founder of Comae Technologies – a cybersecurity startup, took it to tweeter after a Bitcoin advertisement eluded the new Facebook rules that ban cryptocurrencies and ICO ads. The ad was titled “MUST READ! Don’t Invest in BlTC0lN Before You Read This.”
Notice that the Bitcoin spelling is purposely misspelled to dodge company’s new ad policy.
Suiche tweeted “This is ridiculous. Ads are evading new Facebook rules against cryptocurrencies, and [Initial Coin Offerings] by misspelling them. ‘BlTC0lN’ with L and Zeros.”
A Facebook spokesperson told Motherboard that the issue is under investigation.
On January 30, 2017, the social media giant banned advertisements of financial products that employe misleading and deceptive practices. Moreover, Facebook acknowledges the new policy to be “intentionally broad,” and will calibrate in the future.
However, users need to be cautious that the current ban cannot detect misspelled letters and digits. Although scammers and fraudsters are always going to find new ways misuse the system, it is evident that the new Facebook policy was applied inattentively. For now, scammers are taking advantage of the system through intentional orthographic errors.
Regarding banning cryptocurrency advertisements, the social networking company’s news page wrote “We want people to continue to discover and learn about new products and services through Facebook ads without fear of scams or deception. That said, there are many companies who are advertising binary options, ICOs and cryptocurrencies that are not currently operating in good faith.”
Facebook Must Anticipate Scammers’ Strategies
The CEO of Vizlegal, a legal startup, Gavin Sheridan compelled the social media giant to ban cryptocurrency advertisements with his incessant twitter campaign. Sheridan acknowledged Facebook’s initial move.
However, he predicted in advance that scammers would find a way around the new policy. He had said:
“The advertisers in question will likely change their strategy in response to this announcement. This puts the focus back on how Facebook accepts and reviews ads in the first place.”
It will be interesting to see how Facebook copes with spammers new strategy. Moreover, the social media platform needs to anticipate other strategies that spammers could employ to dodge the restriction.
Will Facebook introduce a full proof system that blocks these spammy ads? Let us know your opinion in the comments section?