User safety and privacy guidelines

We want to ensure the best user experience, which means excluding advertising that could in any way harm or endanger our users. For details on the policy in Taiwan, please refer to the Taiwan policy.


Misleading content

Unsubstantiated claims

Free offers and price promises

Misleading ads

Promotion of third party products and services

Privacy and data protection

Privacy policy

Phishing

 

Software and downloads

Disallowed behaviors

Disclosures

Uninstall functionality

Bundling functionality


Misleading content

Ad or site content that attempts to mislead site visitors, or can be reasonably perceived as being deceptive, fraudulent, or may be harmful to site visitors, is prohibited.

 

Unsubstantiated claims

Advertising that includes unproven claims or endorsements is not allowed.

  • For example: Ads and sites may not claim an association with government programs when none exists. Advertisers may not use “gov” in ad copy or URLs or show government emblems on their site without documented endorsement from the government.

 

Free offers and price promises

  • The landing page must prominently feature any special prices, discounts, or free offers that are described in the ad.
    • For example, if your ad offers select movies at 50% off, the landing page must feature the movies that are 50% off.
  • The terms and conditions of an offer must be presented prior to the signup or purchase decision. The disclosure (or notice that a disclosure applies) must be made in close proximity to the claim, and must be clear, conspicuous, and in a font equal in size to that of the base font of the landing page.
  • If the ad or landing pages contain “free,” “complimentary,” or other similar offers, your ad and landing page must comply with all applicable legal requirements.

 

Misleading ads

  • Prices and payment terms must be clear and accurate. Subscription services must be clearly disclosed upfront.
    • For example: Ads and landing pages may not claim a price of $9.99 when the true price is $9.99 per month.
  • Ads and landing pages must not charge money for products or services that are widely available elsewhere for free or otherwise exploit users’ unfamiliarity with standard costs. For example:
    • Advertisers may not charge for an equivalent service that is provided by the government for a lower price or no charge.
    • Advertisers may not charge for downloading a product, like Skype, when the same software is offered for free by the owner.

Promotion of third party products and services

Advertisers offering services or otherwise promoting a third party product may not claim affiliation with the owner or manufacturer of the product when no such relationship exists.

  • Advertisers may not state or imply that they are the owner of a product or service when this is not the case, and must disclose when the product or service may also be available somewhere else (by the owner for example).
  • Advertisers must be accurate when describing their relationship with the owner of a product or service (for example if they are authorized distributors).
  • Brands, logos etc. may not be used deceptively, either in ad copy or website, in a way that tends to suggest that the site, product or service is owned, managed, promoted or endorsed by the owner of the product or service, unless a qualified relationship exists (parent-affiliate, certified partners, authorized resellers etc.).
    • Certified partners and resellers must comply with the requirements of the certification program, including brand usage guidelines, and may not misuse their certification credentials for the purpose of misrepresenting affiliation or endorsement, or otherwise conveying legitimacy to their sites and offers for deceptive purposes.
  • Advertisers may not use misleading display or destination URLs or domains.
  • All sites must provide access to contact information, such as a valid phone number, email, contact form or mailing address.
  • Advertisers must not claim to provide a service that can only be provided by the actual owner of the products or service advertised. For example, a third party may not claim to be able to reset email passwords.
  • The fulfillment of the original customer’s request, as advertised in ad copy, must not be made conditional to the provision or purchase of other products or services. Other products or services may be promoted on the website, but they must be clearly identified as such, and it must be easy for the user to decline them.
  • All disclosures and statements required by this policy must be made available in close proximity to the offer, and must be clear, conspicuous and legible.


Privacy and data protection

Advertising is not allowed for websites whose main or sole purpose is the collection of personal data, intended as any information that can be used - either alone or in combination with others - to locate an individual, to be used for consumer or promotional marketing, or actions related to such purposes. This includes advertising for pages that link to or redirect to such sites.

  • Sites may not collect personal information without the user’s consent
  • Collection of sensitive information, such as financial, healthcare, government issued IDs, etc., must be performed on a site hosted on a secure server, such as SSL (https) and only when strictly necessary.
  • As an advertiser, it is your responsibility to comply with all applicable laws and regulations related to your collection and use of personal data. If you collect personal data, you must do so securely.

Privacy policy

If you collect personal data, you must provide a prominent link from your landing page or include within the landing page a privacy policy that is applicable to the information being collected. This privacy policy must:

  • Clearly and prominently include the name of the company that is collecting the personal information.
  • Clearly state the purpose of the information being collected.
  • Provide opt-out instructions, as applicable.
  • Other information, as required by applicable laws and regulations.

 

Phishing

Phishing sites that try to trick visitors into sharing personal data for fraudulent purposes, such as stealing one’s identity for example, are prohibited.

For more information on compliant collection of personal data, please see the Relevance and Quality Guidelines.



Software and downloads

Advertisers should strive to ensure a positive download experience to end users, including clearly identifying the software that is being installed, its source, articulating the effects on the user’s browser settings, operating system etc., and allowing easy uninstall.


Disallowed behaviors

  • Software must not include viruses, malware, spyware (including recording actions performed on the user's device such as keystroke logging), or self-installing programs, must not perform activities that are hidden to the user, and must not be designed to circumvent or impair spam filters.
  • Downloads must not alter, reconfigure or disable existing software installed on the user’s device without clear disclosure to users before install.
  • Dialing a phone number, or connecting remotely to another device or system is not allowed.
  • Alerts or other technologies must not attempt to mislead users into believing something is wrong with their device that needs fixing when this is not the case (i.e. scareware).
  • Software should be available on the website as advertised in ad copy.
    • If the ad copy promotes “latest version, free” of a download, users must be able to download the latest version of the software from the website at no cost, and without the need to download any additional software (either for payment or free).
  • Advertisers must not require a signup or cellular phone number as a condition of a free download.
  • Cloaking behaviors or technology is not allowed.
  • Software may not replace or add to the web page by injecting content from a source with which the site owner does not have an affiliation.

Disclosures

All relevant information must be disclosed to end users before install, including but not limited to:

  • Origin and scope of the download, including where the download originates if it originates from a different domain.
  • All software that is included in the download
  • Actions and effects that the software will have on the user’s device and settings, including changes to the search providers, autocomplete, homepages, local file systems and other configurations and user's settings
  • Alteration of existing software on the user's device
  • Any variations from the official software
  • Software uninstall information.
  • All disclosures and statements required by this policy must be made available in close proximity to the offer, and must be clear, conspicuous and legible.

Uninstall functionality

  • Any software download must include an uninstall function in the Programs and Features or Add/Remove Programs control panel, in the start menu or the operating system’s default removal method.
    • The uninstall process must not be difficult, confusing or made conditional to payments, subscriptions, other downloads etc.
    • The uninstall process must be complete and permanent for each software download. No traces of the specific uninstalled software can remain on the user’s device.

Bundling functionality

In addition to the above,

  • All software that is included in the download must be disclosed
  • Advertisers must not alter advertised software or bundles (for example by injecting code into the bundle).
  • End users must be presented an option to easily decline each individual software within the bundle.
  • Installer and bundles must not crash or freeze programs or the device.
  • Chained bundlers (bundle within a bundle) are not allowed.
  • Undisclosed files that are unnecessary or unrelated to the software being installed must not be delivered.
  • Changes to user’s device and settings, including changes to the search providers, homepages, local file systems and other configurations and user's settings should generally be easily reversible without negative impact.
  • The bundle must contain offers.

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