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IAB welcomes European political unity on the Digital Services Act

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By John Glenday | Reporter

April 26, 2022 | 4 min read

IAB Europe has welcomed a decision by the European Council and European Parliament to uphold the original vision of the Digital Services Act, as set out by the European Commission.

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IAB Europe will now work with the European Commission to implement more stringent advertising transparency standards

The political agreement brings the full weight of EU institutions behind the act, which is intended to enhance user and business confidence online without duplicating existing laws such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Digital Markets Act.

The measures seek to clip the wings of outsized tech firms by opening the door to massive fines of up to 6% of global revenues from the likes of Facebook, Google and Amazon for hosting illegal content.

Due to be enforced from 2024 onwards, the tough new regulatory landscape would outlaw all advertising aimed at children based on sensitive data such as gender and race. The act would also enable governments to request the removal of illegal content including incitements to terrorism, child abuse, hate speech and counterfeit goods.

Such content will now have to be removed under threat of giant fines of up to $7bn in Facebook’s case alone, with repeated rule-breakers set to be barred from the continent altogether.

Greg Mroczkowski, IAB Europe public policy director, said: “Despite having a number of provisions that relate to use of consumer data, DSA will have a separate enforcement regime from the EU’s privacy and data protection legislation. Broad restrictions on the use of data for advertising that were discussed during the legislative process looked like creating a risk of rules governing the same data processing being subject to different, competing enforcement regimes, with the risk of confusion for both users and business.

“While it would appear that the final text mostly avoids this, the regulatory landscape will nonetheless be a very complex one. IAB Europe will remain invested in constructive dialogue with policymakers and regulators with a view to improving legal certainty.”

IAB Europe will now work with the European Commission to implement more stringent advertising transparency standards.

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