Report: Google ran hoax news ads on fact-checking sites

Report: Google ran hoax news ads on fact-checking sites
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Google has been running hoax news ads on fact-checking sites like Politifact and Snopes, The New York Times reported on Tuesday.

The newspaper found that the ads would often mislead readers with false headlines about celebrities, and the articles that the ads led to would invariably be about skin cream products.

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The ads would link to sites that masqueraded as legitimate publications like People and Vogue.

An unidentified source told The New York Times that the accounts that purchased the ads through Google’s AdWords service were terminated after the outlet brought them up with Google.

“As always, when we find deceptive ad practices on our platforms we move swiftly to take action, including suspending the advertiser account if appropriate,” Google spokeswoman Chi Hea Cho told the newspaper in a statement. “In addition, we give publishers controls so they can block specific types of ads and advertisers.”

It’s unclear if the advertisers were intentionally trying to target the fact-checking sites.