All the three companies have agreed to pay a total of $31.5m (£15.7m) to settle claims that they accepted online ads promoting illegal gambling, during the last ten years.
Microsoft has to pay $21m, part of it as a charitable donation to support exploited children ($4.5m to the International Center for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC) to establish a fund to assist ICMEC with its national and international mission), and another part, $9m, for an ad campaign against the online gambling
Yahoo to pay $3m and to fund an $4.5m ad campaign against the online gambling.
Google has to pay $3m.
All the three companies say that they stopped the online gambling advertising some years ago.
In accordance with the News Release,
“These sums add to the over $40 million in forfeitures and back taxes this office has already recovered in recent years from operators of these remote-control illegal gambling enterprises,” said Hanaway. “Honest taxpayers and gambling industry personnel who do follow the law suffer from those who promote illegal online behavior.”
“Illegal internet gaming operations continue to be areas of IRS compliance concern,” stated James D. Vickery, Special Agent in Charge, IRS-Criminal Investigation. “CI will continue to play an enforcement role in the illegal gaming industry and to support regulatory and legislative initiatives aimed at eliminating an environment conducive to illegal gambling.”