Google Blocked 780 Million Bad Ads in 2015


A new blog post by Google has revealed the search giant had to block a massive 780 million ‘bad’ advertisements in 2015, many of which included malware.

While it’s entirely expected that you and many internet users are annoyed by Google advertisements scattered around their browsing sessions, it might come as a surprise to know that Google actually blocks advertisements from its crucial revenue-making “Google Ads” service.

In 2015, the search giant revealed that it had banned over 780 million advertisements that violated its guidelines. These include malware, scams, phishing attempts, weight-loss scams, pharmaceutical products that weren’t approved and more.

The company also stated that it had a global team of over a thousand people in place exclusively dedicated to looking for and removing bad advertisements.

Google pointed to a combination of people reviewing bad ads and computer algorithms at the core of the bad-ad fighting operation, noting that this practice ensures that a significant majority of bad advertisements are taken down before they are even shown to the public domain.

Some numbers from 2015 include:

  • The suspension of over 10,000 websites and 18,000 accounts attempting to sell counterfeit goods such as designer watches, etc.
  • Over 12.5 million pharmaceutical ads that were in violation of Google’s healthcare and medicines policy. Chief among these ads were those who sold unapproved drugs.
  • Over 30,000 misleading claims of weight-loss scams.
  • 7,000 phishing websites
  • 10,000 sites offering unwanted software and malware.
  • 17 million scamming adverts that usually read “system error” etc.

Google stated:

When ads are good, they connect you to products or services you’re interested in and make it easier to get stuff you want. They also keep a lot of what you love about the web—like news sites or mobile apps—free.

But some ads are just plain bad—like ads that carry malware, cover up content you’re trying to see, or promote fake goods. Bad ads can ruin your entire online experience, a problem we take very seriously.

Google is also stepping up its services on for mobile users by optimizing several elements on the web page to load faster. This includes advertisements.

The company claims that it has stopped ads on over 25,000 mobile apps because developers violated ad policies. A number of these violations included developer attempts of putting ads far too close to the app’s functionality buttons.

Image credit: Flickr.