Back in 2018 Google introduced an identification verification policy for political advertisers so that users could learn more about the ads they were served.

Now Google has announced that it will be expanding this policy to apply to all advertisers.

“Advertisers will need to submit personal identification, business incorporation documents or other information that proves who they are and the country in which they operate. Beginning this summer, users will start to see disclosures that list this information about the advertiser behind the ads they see,” wrote director of product management at Google, John Canfield.

Of course Summer in the US, where Google is based, is Winter here in South Africa. We really wish our American friends would use months and not seasons to let us know when things are happening.

Any way, we’re getting sidetracked.

The idea behind the expansion of this policy is so that folks know who is advertising to them.

That’s one side of it, the other is to detect bad actors and “limit their attempts to misrepresent themselves”.

Google says it will start by verifying advertisers in the US in phases before expanding the policy globally.

“Because we are working closely with our advertising partners to scale the program while continuing to ensure we are surfacing helpful information to our users, we expect that this process will take a few years to complete,” said Canfield.

As advertisers wait for the policy to reach them, they can read more about how identities will be verified here.

“At Google, our goal is to make more information about the ad experience universally available and accessible. Broadening our verification policy is the next step in reaching that goal. We’ll continue to look for additional ways to increase transparency in ads for our users,” concluded Canfield.

[Source – Google]