Alphabet Inc’s Google unit told US election regulators in a letter seen by Reuters that it “strongly supports” tightening rules on online political advertising as part of efforts to curtail“foreign abuse and influence” in elections.Federal lawmakers have criticised Google, Facebook Inc and Twitter Inc for not doing enough to identify and block Russian agents from buying ads on their services. US authorities say the ads were intended to influence voters during the 2016 presidential election.
US law permits foreign entities to advertise about certain issues if they disclose such spending, but it is unlawful for them to interfere in elections.
In September, the Federal Election Commission (FEC), which sets campaign finance rules, voted to consider ensuring that those disclosure rules apply to online activity. It opened a public comment period that is set to expire on Monday (Nov 13).
In the letter to the FEC on Thursday, Google offered its formal response to the FEC’s deliberation. “Now more than ever, we must work together to improve transparency, enhance disclosures and reduce foreign abuse and influence in US elections,” the company wrote.