Google Bans Product Ads That Secretly Monitor and Track You

Google has decided it will no longer allow ads for products or services that aim to track or monitor another person without their prior authorization, according to CNBC.

“We constantly evaluate and update our ad policies to ensure we are protecting users,” a Google spokesperson said in a statement. “We routinely update our language with examples to help clarify what we consider policy violating. Spyware technology for partner surveillance was always in scope of our policies against dishonest behavior.”

In an update to the company’s ad policy, the “Enabling Dishonest Behavior” policy will apply to spyware and technology that is used for the surveillance of personal partners. This includes tech that monitors texts, phone calls or browsing history. It also applies to GPS trackers that can be used to spy on someone without their consent as well as surveillance equipment, which includes cameras, dash cams, and nanny cams. 

The tech giant said “private investigation services” and products and services for parents to track or monitor their underage children will be exempt, according to Infosecurity Magazine.

Google is also searching for particular search terms and restricting ads for those types of terms. They include: “How to catch a cheating spouse with his cell phone” and “Track My Wife’s Phone — Want to Spy on your Wife? Track your Wife without her knowing. Discover Who Are They messaging. Download! 24-Hour Support Price Superiority No Jailbreaking and App Results Guaranteed.”

Enforcement of the policy will begin August 11.