Verification for election advertising in the United Kingdom

 

Google requires verification for advertisers who want to run election ads in the UK.

This verification is required for all ad formats and ad extensions. The application process requires up to two steps and can take up to five working days for each step. See the requirements for verification below for more details.

Important note on ad disclosures

Election Ads: Google requires that all election ads contain a disclosure identifying who has paid for the ad. For most ad formats, Google will automatically generate a "Paid for by" disclosure using the information provided during the verification process. The disclosure will display the name of the entity that paid for the ad to users who see the ad.

How disclosure appears in different ad formats 

  • On Google Search and the Search Partner network, the disclosure will show in ads directly
  • On YouTube, the disclosure will show in “Why this ad?” which can be accessed through the info icon Info icon or the three-dot icon 
  • On websites and apps that partner with Google for display ads, the disclosure will show in “Why this ad?” which can be accessed through the AdChoices icon AdChoices icon

For some ad formats and features, it’s the advertiser’s responsibility to include in-ad disclosures in UK election ads. Learn more about the policy.

To provide transparency for users, Google will also publish a Political Advertising transparency report and a political ads library with data on funding sources for election ads, the amounts being spent and more.

Other ads: For ads that you run that are not election ads, most ad formats will contain a disclosure using the information provided during the election advertising verification process. This means that your name, or the name of the organisation or business that you represent, and country, will be displayed in a disclosure that is automatically generated by Google. Find out more about Advertiser transparency and disclosures.

Requirements for verification

You can be verified to run election ads as an organisation or an individual.

  • You're an organisation if you're a political party, non-profit organisation, business or other entity. If you need to be verified as an organisation, the 'Account type' selected for your Google Ads payment profile must be 'Business'.
  • You're an individual if you don’t meet the criteria for being verified as an organisation. If you need to be verified as an individual, the 'Account type' selected for your Google Ads payment profile must be 'Individual'.

You can check your 'Account type' in your Google Ads payment profile via the 'Settings' page for 'Billing & payments'. Note that your 'Account type' can’t be modified. If your 'Account type' is 'Individual' but you need to verify as an organisation, or vice versa, we recommend that you create a new Google Ads account with the appropriate 'Account type' setting before applying for verification.

If you’re an agency or someone who manages multiple Google Ads accounts, each individual account planning to run election ads will need to apply for verification. You're required to verify the end advertiser, not the agency or intermediary acting on their behalf. For example, an agency advertising on behalf of a political party should verify as the political party.

Advertisers who were previously verified to run election ads in the EU, and now wish to run election ads in the UK, must reapply for verification with a new Google Ads account that meets the UK verification requirements.

Verification for organisations

Step 1: Verify eligibility to run election ads

You must be an authorised representative for the advertiser in order to complete the two steps of this verification process. Verifying eligibility to run election ads can take up to five working days for each step. In the application form, you’ll be asked to provide the following, as the authorised representative:

  • Your Google Ads customer ID
  • Email address: The email address used by your organisation.
  • Certification that the organisation is registered or based in the UK.
  • Name of organisation: Bear in mind that this name will be visible in the ad’s 'Paid for by' disclosure, as well as in the Political Advertising Transparency Report and the political ads library.
  • Registration number: For example, the business registration number.
  • Document confirming organisation name: Some examples of acceptable documents include: an approved election registration for a UK election; bank, credit card or insurance statements, letters, leasing or mortgage documents, confirmation certificates from official government authority; receipts or other copies of court or other authority rulings or decisions on registrations.
  • Official organisation address: This must be a UK address.
  • Proof of organisation address: A document showing proof of address must be submitted. Acceptable documents include registration documents, invoices, purchase orders, utility bills, bank, credit card or insurance statements or letters, leasing or mortgage documents. This document must be dated no more than one year old.
  • Attestation that the authorised representative is a citizen or resident of the UK.
  • Attestation that the organisation applying for verification is organised under the laws of, or based in, the UK and is legally permitted to run election ads in the UK.
  • Agreement to the Google Election Advertising Terms

Step 2: Verify your identity

Once Google verifies the advertiser's eligibility to run election ads, you’ll receive an email and an in-account notification (in a red bar at the top of the Google Ads account), that guides you through the identity verification process in Google Ads.

As noted above, you must be an authorised representative to complete this step.

To verify, you’ll be asked for the following:

  • Organisation name
  • Organisation address
  • Registration document or number for the organisation: You can provide your approved election registration for a UK election; bank, credit card or insurance statements or letters or leasing or mortgage documents, confirmation certificates from official government authority; receipts or copies of court or other authority rulings or decisions on registrations.
  • Authorised representative name: Note that this must exactly match the name on the government-issued photo ID that you submit, including any capitalisation or punctuation.
  • Authorised representative address
  • A copy of your government-issued photo ID: A current UK or Irish passport, UK driving licence or UK residence permit.
  • Attestation that the authorised representative is a citizen or resident of the UK.
  • Attestation that the organisation applying for verification is organised under the laws of, or based in, the UK and is legally permitted to run election ads in the UK.
  • Agreement to the Google Election Advertising Terms, on behalf of the organisation.
Verification for individuals

Step 1: Verify eligibility to run election ads

Verifying eligibility to run election ads can take up to five working days. In the application form, you’ll be asked to provide the following:

  • Your Google Ads customer ID
  • Email address
  • Name: This name should match the name in your Google Ads payment profile (which you can view in the 'Settings' page for 'Billing & payments') and the name on the government-issued photo ID that you submit in Step 2. Note that this name will be visible in the ad’s 'Paid for by' disclosure, as well as in the Political Advertising transparency report and the political ads library.
  • Address: This must be a UK address. 
  • Proof of address: A document showing proof of address must be submitted. Acceptable documents include a UK driving licence, utility bills, bank, credit card or insurance statements or letters, leasing or mortgage documents. This document must be dated no more than one year old.
  • Attestation that you are a citizen or resident of the United Kingdom and that you are legally permitted to run election ads in the United Kingdom.
  • Agreement to the Google Election Advertising Terms

Step 2: Verify your identity

Once Google verifies your eligibility to run election ads, you’ll receive an email and an in-account notification (in a red bar at the top of your Google Ads account) that guides you through the identity verification process in Google Ads.

To verify, you’ll need to provide the following in Google Ads:

  • Name: Your name as provided here must match the name in your government-issued photo ID. Note that this name will be visible in the ad’s 'Paid for by' disclosure, as well as in the Political Advertising transparency report and the political ads library.
  • Date of birth
  • A copy of your government-issued photo ID: A current UK or Irish passport, UK driving licence or UK residence permit.
  • Attestation that you are a citizen or resident of the United Kingdom and that you are legally permitted to run election ads in the United Kingdom.
  • Agreement to the Google Election Advertising Terms

How to apply for verification

You can apply for verification using this application form. You’ll be asked to complete the steps detailed above for organisations or individuals.

Google will review your application and send you an email notification about your verification status within five working days.

Bear in mind

  • Information in the Google Ads payment profile is used for verification. If you make changes to your payment profile in Google Ads, you’ll need to complete identity verification again. You’ll receive an in-account notification when this is required.
  • If we find that you’ve violated our election advertising policy, or you’ve provided false information during the verification process, your verification will be revoked, and your account may be suspended.
  • You’ll need to renew your verification periodically. You’ll receive a notification when this verification is required.
  • If you change your account’s invoice setup, you’ll need to verify your account again to run election ads in the UK.
  • Google may update these verification requirements at any time

How Google uses your information

With the information that you provide during the verification process, Google will verify your identity and eligibility to run election ads.

  • For election ads, Google will:

    • Generate, when possible, an in-ad disclosure that identifies who paid for your election ad. This means that your name, or the name of the organisation that you represent, will be displayed in the ad shown to users.

    • Publish a publicly available Political Advertising transparency report and a political ads library with data on funding sources for election ads, the amounts being spent and more.

  • For all other ads, Google will:

    • Generate, when possible, an in-ad disclosure using the information provided during the verification programme. This means that your name, or the name of the advertiser that you represent, and country, will be displayed in a disclosure shown to users. Find out more about Advertiser transparency and disclosures.

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