Facebook to test new ad transparency features in Canada

Beginning next month in Canada, any ad purchased on Facebook will have to be associated with a Facebook page (most companies and brands already use pages to post content and interact with their customers), and a new tab appearing on every page will let anyone see what ads that organization has purchased and how they have been targeted.

When implemented users will be able to click on the disclosure for more information about the advertiser.

Facebook plans to pull back the curtain on political advertising amid pressure from US lawmakers to do more to protect election integrity.

Facebook Inc (O:), Twitter Inc (N:) and Google (NASDAQ:) have in recent weeks said Russian operatives bought ads and used fake names on their services to spread divisive messages in the run-up to the 2016 US presidential election.

On Friday, the company also provided more details about new requirements for political advertisers to verify their identities with Facebook, which will start with federal elections in the United States before expanding to other countries and regions.

Facebook said it's expanding transparency measures to all advertising.

Users will also be able to see if they're part of the targeted audience that advertisers are trying to reach and who paid for an election ad.

It comes after Facebook last month admitted a group linked to Russian Federation had spent at least $100,000 (£76,000) on adverts in what appeared to be an attempt to influence the USA presidential election. It also plans to build an archive of federal election ads so people can look historically at campaigns, Facebook said.

Twitter launched its own similar tool on Tuesday.

It also said that it would allow people to see the ads a Facebook business page - whether a brand, small business or a person - is now running.

On Nov. 1, lawyers from Facebook, Google and Twitter are scheduled to testify before Senate and House Intelligence committee hearings about Russia-linked accounts and ads. And Facebook says it's building machine learning tools so that it can find the political advertisers who don't identify themselves.

Facebook has responded swiftly to the attention it has received in recent months on Capitol Hill, boosting staff and lobbying efforts.

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