Regulatory Outlook

Advertising and marketing | UK Regulatory Outlook April 2024

Published on 23rd Apr 2024

ASA publishes 2023 annual report | FCA publishes finalised guidance on financial promotions on social media

ASA publishes 2023 annual report

The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has published its 2023 annual report highlighting its progress in regulating the digital advertising world using artificial intelligence (AI) and tech-assisted tools and the shift it has made from complaints-led investigations towards proactive, ASA-led monitoring and enforcement.

The 2023 work highlights and future plans include:

  • AI-assisted collective ad regulation: this 2024-2028 strategy, which uses the ASA's AI-based Active Ad Monitoring System, was introduced last year (see this Regulatory Outlook). The ASA says that in 2023, a total of 3 million ads were processed using the system across various areas, including climate change and the environment, youth vaping, gambling and prescription-only medicines. This year, the regulator plans to expand its use and the areas covered.
  • Misleading environmental claims: climate change and the environment remain priority areas for 2024. The ASA also intends to publish the outcome of its research on claims in ads for meat, dairy and plant-based substitutes early in 2024.
  • Body image and cosmetic surgery abroad: in 2024, as part of its wider communication on its Body Image project, the ASA will publish its insights from both the roundtable that it held with stakeholders and the evidence it received in response to its call for input.
  • Youth vaping: in 2024, the ASA will continue monitoring ads for vaping products that are targeted at or likely to appeal to under-18s and plans to issue an enforcement notice.
  • Intermediary and Platform Principles (IPP): following the successful pilot of the IPP, the ASA now sees it as a "tried and tested way in which platforms and intermediaries can play a part … in supporting the ASA to help secure responsible advertising online" and is committed to developing the regulatory framework further.

FCA publishes finalised guidance on financial promotions on social media

The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has released its finalised guidance on financial promotions on social media, which provides direction for firms and influencers on how to navigate financial promotions using social media. See our Insight for more details.


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* This article is current as of the date of its publication and does not necessarily reflect the present state of the law or relevant regulation.

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