June 14, 2016 by Joy Thompson
Google has made the decision to ban payday loan advertisements from July 13th onwards. Last year, 780 million advertisements were removed from the search giant’s AdWords platform. Now Google wants to practice some “corporate citizenship” by protecting their users from “deceptive or harmful financial products.”
Michael Scurato, VP for policy at the National Hispanic Media Coalition said, “Payday lenders have long preyed on Latinos and other people of color. It is important to ensure that the Internet, which holds great promise for improving economic outcomes among these communities, not also be used as an agent of harm.”
Specifically, Google will ban advertisements that promote loans with 36% interest rates or higher, and also loans that must be paid back in under 60 days. They feel this is in the best interests of the consumer due to the way the ads target the financially vulnerable.
Keith Corbett, executive VP of the Center for Responsible Lending and co-chair of Economic Security Task Force of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, says, “As a leading search engine and innovator, Google’s announced updated policy on financial services advertising is a major consumer coup. By removing ads that lure financially challenged consumers into long-term and costly debt traps, Google is displaying what corporate citizenship looks like.”