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Tech ObserverNewsIndustryGoogle, Facebook likely to face more ‘accountability’ under new law in UK

Google, Facebook likely to face more ‘accountability’ under new law in UK

British lawmakers have demanded to make Google, Facebook, and other online services legally accountable for advertisements on their platforms

British lawmakers have demanded to make Google, Facebook, and other online services legally accountable for advertisements on their platforms

Troubles for the BigTech companies seem far from over. A cross-party group of British lawmakers has demanded to make , , and other online services legally accountable for advertisements on their platforms in order to prevent fraudsters from scamming millions of consumers.

UK has also proposed a landmark online safety law to punish abuses such as child pornography, racism, and violence against women, but a joint committee of lawmakers drawn from both Houses of Parliament said on Tuesday it should go a step further to cover paid-for adverts.

“Excluding paid-for advertising will leave service providers with little incentive to remove harmful adverts, and risks encouraging the further proliferation of such content,” the joint committee report said.

The Financial Conduct Authority also wants adverts on social media and search engines, currently excluded from the draft law, to be included after 754 million pounds ($999.65 million) was stolen from consumers in the first six months of this year.

The report also backed a Law Commission recommendation to make cyber flashing, or the unsolicited sending of obscene images or video recordings, which are often a feature of sexual harassment, illegal.

The draft law is due to be approved in 2022 and the government has two months to say if it will back the recommendation, along with several others which lawmakers say are needed to “call time on the Wild West online.”

“The era of self-regulation for big tech has come to an end. The companies are clearly responsible for services they have designed and profit from, and need to be held to account for the decisions they make,” said Damian Collins, who chairs the committee.

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