The European Union is pulling its advertisements from Elon Musk’s X for now, citing an “alarming increase” in hate speech and disinformation on the platform formerly known as Twitter. A more drastic move could come next year. The European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm, could impose a fine of more than $100 million on X if the company is found to have breached tough new EU rules aimed at cleaning up digital media. “We have seen an alarming increase in disinformation and hate speech on several social media platforms in recent weeks,” Johannes Bahrke, a European Commission spokesperson, said Friday. Bahrke said the commission had advised EU institutions “to refrain from advertising” on platforms where such content was present, adding that he could confirm only that X had been affected by the temporary ban. In October, a few days after Palestinian militant group Hamas launched a deadly attack on Israel, the European Commission asked X to provide details of the actions it was taking to combat the spread of “illegal content and disinformation” on its platform. The commission is currently reviewing X’s response and deciding on its next steps. It has also asked TikTok and Facebook parent Meta for similar information. Social media companies operating in the EU are bound by obligations set out in the Digital Services Act, landmark legislation, enacted in August, that seeks to regulate large tech companies more stringently and protect people’s rights online. Under the DSA, companies found to have flouted its rules can be fined up to 6% of their annual global revenue. Musk, who became the owner of X a little over a year ago, expects the company to generate $3 billion in revenue this year, according to a Reuters report in July. That means, should the European Commission find that X has broken DSA rules, the company could be fined as much as $180 million. X did not respond to a CNN request for comment. However, a fine is unlikely until next year as each of the EU’s 27 member states first needs to appoint national “digital services coordinators” — with the power to impose penalties — by February 17. So far, only two states, Italy and Hungary, have done so, a commission spokesperson told CNN. Antisemitism at the top? A tidal wave of antisemitism, Islamophobia and misinformation has engulfed social media platforms in recent weeks since the unprecedented October 7 attack by Hamas, followed by air strikes and a ground offensive by Israel against the Hamas-controlled enclave of Gaza. Some of that hateful content has been embraced by Musk, the world’s richest man. Last Wednesday, in an X post to his 164 million followers, Musk endorsed an antisemitic conspiracy theory, which claims that Jewish communities promulgate hate against white people. That conspiracy theory motivated the killer of 11 worshipers at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh in 2018 — the deadliest attack against Jewish people in American history. Musk has denied accusations that he is antisemitic, saying in a post Sunday that “nothing could be further from the truth.” But that hasn’t stopped a slew of prominent media companies, including Disney and Paramount, from pulling their ads from X. The European Commission, which recently sounded the alarm on a sharp rise in antisemitism in Europe, has so far stopped short of criticizing Musk directly. A commission spokesperson declined to comment to CNN on Musk’s X post from last Wednesday. In contrast, on Friday, the White House has condemned the post. “It is unacceptable to repeat the hideous lie behind the most fatal act of antisemitism in American history at any time, let alone one month after the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust,” White House spokesperson Andrew Bates said in a statement to CNN. “We condemn this abhorrent promotion of antisemitic and racist hate in the strongest terms.” Spotlight on Musk The European Commission said on November 5 that it had seen “a resurgence of antisemitic incidents and rhetoric” within its borders in recent weeks, including attacks on synagogues in Germany and Spain, and on a Jewish cemetery in Austria. “In these difficult times the EU stands by its Jewish communities. We condemn these despicable acts in the strongest possible terms,” it said in a statement. Germany’s Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency, which promotes equal treatment at work and in everyday life, announced on October 11 that it would stop using X entirely, citing an “enormous increase” in discriminatory and hateful speech on the platform. And it called out Musk directly. “Ministries and state bodies should ask themselves whether it is still acceptable to remain on a platform that has become a disinformation network and whose owner spreads antisemitic, racist and populist content,” Ferda Ataman, Germany’s independent federal commissioner for anti-discrimination, said in a statement. In an email to CNN Wednesday, Ataman added that there “cannot be any justification for public institutions to support X by continuing to use this platform.” She said “the spread of conspiracy theories, antisemitism and hate speech on X as well as the continued support of hateful and antisemitic content by Musk” proved that point. Europe’s new digital rules do not include powers to fine individuals for the content they post on social media. In theory, X’s content moderators should hold Musk to account. Sandra Wachter, a professor of technology and regulation at the Oxford Internet Institute, said they are required by the DSA to treat their boss like any other user by, for example, taking down his posts or flagging them as problematic if they break EU rules. “There you see the conflict of interest,” Wachter added, acknowledging the extraordinary difficulty of expecting X employees to police their own boss.