Google cracked down on unscrupulous advertisers last year, disabling more than 524 million bad ads and banning more than 214,000 advertisers who were misusing ads for harmful or deceptive purposes.
The search engine giant on Tuesday released its annual review of bad advertising practices. Google revealed that it removed 250,000 sites from its network for hiding forms of malware and said it banned 7,000 advertisers for promoting counterfeit goods, down from 14,000 in 2013.
"We work hard to keep our advertising ecosystem clean for users, advertisers, and publishers, and continue to invest substantial resources to stop bad advertising practices," Vikaram Gupta, Google's director of ads engineering, said in a blog post. "We have a team of analysts who work around the clock to protect users, and continue to hone our detection technology to identify bad ads and stop bad actors."
For example, last summer Google's analysis technology flagged a particular set of accounts as suspicious. The ads appeared to be ordinary rental property ads that met the company's policies, but the vacation rentals turned out to be a scam and the rental properties didn't exist.
Gupta also said the Mountain View, Calif., company went after weight-loss scams that used "outrageous claims to entice consumers."
"This is a constantly evolving fight," he said. "Bad actors continually create more sophisticated systems and scams, so we too are continually evolving our practices, technology and methodology in fighting these bad ads."