Today, the European Union’s Digital Services Act (DSA) – a far reaching piece of legislation designed to keep users safe online – starts applying to a number of online platforms and search engines, including LinkedIn and Bing. Below, Microsoft provides an update on our progress to date to meet the DSA’s obligations. LinkedIn details their actions here.
Microsoft is deeply committed to creating safe experiences online and we take the responsibility to protect our users from illegal and harmful online content and conduct seriously. As a company with a diverse range of online services, we tailor safety interventions to the service and online harm, while balancing other important interests, including freedom of expression and access to information, privacy, and security.
How we’re continuing to strengthen safety on Bing
A differentiated and risk-based approach to safety also sits at the heart of the DSA. Providers and users in the European Union will benefit from the DSA’s focus on how services implement the systems and processes to mitigate potential risks arising from illegal and harmful content, as well as the increased transparency about how different services are approaching these challenges.
Building on our ongoing efforts to understand and address systemic digital safety risks, we have submitted our Risk Assessment Report on Bing to the European Commission and Ireland’s Coimisiún na Meán, the Digital Services Coordinator of establishment. We will continue to take steps to measure and mitigate risks on Bing, enabling us to protect our users while preserving their ability to find relevant and authoritative information online.
To improve the user experience, consistent with the goals of the DSA, we have recently implemented several changes, which include:
- Launching a new Digital Safety website to provide a one-stop shop to learn about our practices, policies and how to report a concern across Microsoft’s range of online services to make it easier for users to find information about our services, including Bing.
- Updating our Report a Concern processes for Bing, readily available at the link in the footer of every Bing page, to add a specific category for reporting concerns in generative AI features, expand the ability for minors to more easily report exposed personal information, and clarify that Bing’s longstanding policy to remove nonconsensual intimate imagery (NCII, commonly referred to as “revenge porn”) includes synthetic “deepfake” images.
- Creating the Microsoft Ad Library to provide greater transparency to consumers about the ads they see on the Bing platform.
- Developing additional transparency documentation to better explain to users how Bing search works, including its ranking principles, moderation policies, and user controls: How Bing Delivers Search Results.
- Starting in October, we will publish a new, DSA-focused biannual report on our Microsoft Reports Hub, in addition to providing updates on the average monthly active users of Bing in the EU every six months.
We will also evolve and continue to improve our approach as the service evolves, such as through the introduction of Bing’s new generative AI features. We will implement additional safeguards to protect against new risks related to AI as they arise and will continue to be transparent about our approach through updates to The New Bing: Our Approach to Responsible AI.
We welcome ongoing feedback as we work to strengthen the safety of our services. We know that advancing digital safety requires meaningful collaboration with experts across government, academia, civil society, and industry, and we will continue to coordinate with the multistakeholder community to address and mitigate online harms.
Over the coming months, we will continue our work to ensure Microsoft meets the requirements of the DSA and to engage with the European Commission and other key stakeholders on our approach to digital safety. We encourage continued dialogue among regulators and policymakers around the globe on ways in which these requirements can be harmonized or aligned.