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Microsoft Advertising Network policies

Disallowed content

30 June 2023


Information integrity and misleading content

Microsoft prohibits misleading deceptive content, or harmful content, or content that otherwise threatens public or personal safety, physical, mental, or financial health, or content whose primary purpose is to create controversy. Examples include, without limitations: Unsubstantiated claims; fraudulent free offers or pricing claims; sensationalized text or images; content that isn’t related to the product/service being promoted; misrepresentations; unauthorized promotion of third-party products and services; information influence operations, foreign interference, false or misleading content that may cause public harm, or other similar behaviors (“disinformation”).

Information integrity

Following its commitment to a safe online environment, Microsoft Advertising has developed policies and enforcement processes to protect users from potential harm caused by misleading or false information while upholding the fundamental right to freedoms of expression and information. Microsoft will not willfully profit from disinformation nor fund disinformation actors. This includes, without limitations, prohibiting:

  • Ads or sites that contain or lead to disinformation, or that may otherwise be untruthful or deceptive in any way. 
  • Ads that lead to landing pages containing disinformation, or other false, untruthful, or deceptive content.

We may use a combination of internal signals and trusted third-party data or information sources to reject, block, or take down ads or sites that contain disinformation or send traffic to pages containing disinformation.

We may block at the domain level landing pages or sites that violate this policy.

Unsubstantiated claims

Advertising that includes unproven claims or endorsements, including unauthorized celebrity endorsements, isn’t allowed.

Misleading ads

  • All messaging, content, and images must adhere to FTC requirements and guidelines (or market equivalent) for truth in advertising.
    • Messaging/content that isn’t related to the topics on the landing page site is not permitted. For example, a native ad about a famous Hollywood celebrity shouldn’t link to a site about financial content.
    • It’s not acceptable for an advertiser to give the appearance of knowing privileged or confidential information about the user. For example: “Your credit score is…”
    • Advertisers may be asked to provide third-party substantiation to support certain claims.
  • Ads cannot use false or misleading information about geographical origin, or nature or quality of a product or service that gives the impression of a link if one doesn’t exist.
  • Ads cannot omit information that a trader’s required to provide to a consumer. This would be considered misleading omission.
  • Ads may not suggest or imply endorsement from a well-known entity such as an official or celebrity when such endorsement is untrue. For example, images may not feature a known actor in conjunction with a product unless that actor has agreed to promote or endorse the product, and the advertiser has permission to promote the same.  
    • Proof of partnership or endorsement must be provided upon request.
  • Advertisements and landing pages that may be considered faux blogs, articles, press releases, false product reviews or that simulate editorial, or content sites aren’t acceptable.
  • 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 downloading a product, like Skype, when the same software is offered for free by the owner.