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Google to ban cryptocurrency advertising

In a move which is sure to provoke controversy, web giant Google has announced that advertising of cryptocurrencies will be banned on its platforms from June 2018.

googlecryptoban

Announcing its new restricted financial products policy, the company has moved to institute a ban on “cryptocurrencies and related content (including but not limited to initial coin offerings, cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets, and cryptocurrency trading advice)", in addition to banning advertising on binary options and synonymous products.

No reason for the ban was given with the new codes, however reports on the BBC website claim that Google “decided to act because it felt there was a lack of appropriate consumer protections for highly speculative and complex trades.”

The decision by Google comes almost two weeks after Bank of England Governor Mark Carney called for cryptocurrencies to be brought onto the same “level regulatory playing field” as the rest of the financial services industry.

On Tuesday, International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde authored a blog which stated that "The rapid growth of crypto-assets, the extreme volatility in their traded prices, and their ill-defined connections to the traditional financial world could easily create new vulnerabilities.

"We must welcome their potential but also recognise their risks."

In addition, affiliates and advertisers offering contracts for difference, rolling spot forex, and financial spread betting will be required to be certified by Google before they can advertise through AdWords, with certification only being available in certain countries.

To be certified, advertisers will need to be licensed by the relevant financial services authority in the country or countries they are targeting, ensure their ads and landing pages comply with all AdWords policies and comply with relevant legal requirements, including those related to complex speculative financial products.

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