Facebook Restricts Addiction Ads To Prevent Scams

With its massive user base and worldwide reach, Facebook is the perfect tool for cybercriminals looking to scam the most possible people. That includes targeting users at their most vulnerable, like when they’re depressed, out of work or struggling with addiction. Thankfully, Facebook cracked down on the latter this week when it restricted advertising for addiction treatment centers on its platform.  

“People facing addiction or who have loved ones in need should be able to find support without encountering scams or predatory behavior,” Facebook wrote in a blog post announcing the new restrictions. “Experts have warned about some addiction treatment centers that… fail to meet basic healthcare quality standards. Many of these take part in insurance scams and many keep people in a cycle of addiction.”

To prevent these scam treatment centers from advertising, Facebook is partnering with a third-party certification service that will verify whether or not a treatment center is legit before it can buy ads. According to Facebook, this will “help prevent bad actors from marketing their services on Facebook and taking advantage of people in need.” In the same announcement, Facebook also revealed that it will now prohibit bail bonds advertising for many of the same reasons.  

Of course, scams like this are just a drop in the bucket of all the fraud taking place on Facebook. But every little step counts toward fighting it.