New efforts to tackle Facebook scam ads are being introduced in the UK after action has been taken by consumer champion Martin Lewis.
The social media company publishes a scam ad reporting tool, with a specially trained team that investigates user alerts, evaluates reports, and deals with violations to prevent potentially misleading advertisements.
Trends of scam advertisements will also be analyzed to support enforcement.
Scam ads often use fake celebrity images or approvals to mislead people into buying fake products and services, such as bitcoin trading schemes and diet pills.
Lewis closed a lawsuit against Facebook in January after the social network had agreed to create a reporting tool and donate £ 3 million to Citizens Advice for an anti-scam project.
The special online scams service from Citizens Advice, called Scams Action, offers personal support to those who are scared that they have been scammed.
Lewis previously announced his intention to prosecute Facebook for defamation on a personal basis in a groundbreaking process after the appearance of a number of scam ads with his photo.
"The UK is facing an epidemic of online scam ads – they are everywhere," said the founder of MoneySavingExpert.com. "Yet outrageous there is little effective law or regulation to prevent them, and official enforcement is bad to non-existent, as these criminals are usually based outside the EU.
"That's why I called for libel, bizarre the only law I could find to try and help large technology companies see what damage their negligent behavior has caused." Today should be the start of real improvement. The goal is to use the power of what I & # 39; social policing & # 39; dubbing to combat this scam.
"Millions of people know a scam when they see it, and millions do not." So now I would ask anyone who recognizes them to use the new Facebook reporting tool, to protect those who don't – including many vulnerable people.
"Facebook & # 39; s new dedicated team will then hopefully respond quickly to dump the scammers."
Citizens Advice said his Scams Action team was expected to help at least 20,000 people in the first year and also work to identify and raise awareness of online scams.
"We know that online scams affect thousands of people every year," said Gillian Guy, the chief executive of Citizens Advice. "We are pleased that the agreement between Martin Lewis and Facebook meant that we could set up this dedicated service to provide more help to people who have fallen victim to online scams."
Steve Hatch, the vice president for Northern Europe on Facebook, said scam advertisements are a problem for the entire industry caused by criminals and have "no place on Facebook". "Through our work with Martin Lewis, we are taking a leading market position and our new reporting tool and dedicated team are important steps to stop the abuse of our platform," he said.
"Prevention is also the key. Our £ 3m donation to Citizens Advice will not only help those affected by scammers, but also make people aware of how to prevent scams.
"Worldwide we have tripled the security and safety team to 30,000 people and we continue to invest heavily in removing bad content from our platform."