The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is suing Meta over scam ads on Facebook featuring fake celebrity endorsements.
Meta, formerly Facebook, has a complicated history with Australia, having recently engaged in a showdown over paying for news. Simultaneously, the company has struggled to keep misinformation and scammers off of its site.
According to International Business Times, scammers used Facebook’s own algorithm to target susceptible users with fake ads feature celebrities “endorsing” various products. The ACCC believes Meta should be held responsible for not doing enough to stop the problem.
“The essence of our case is that Meta is responsible for these ads that it publishes on its platform,” ACCC chairman Rod Sims said in a statement.
“In one shocking instance, we are aware of a consumer who lost more than A$650,000 (£360,000; $480,000) due to one of these scams being falsely advertised as an investment opportunity on Facebook. This is disgraceful,” Mr Sims said.
If Meta were to lose the case, it would set a major precedent, and likely lead other jurisdictions to follow suit.