Minimizing Malware/Frauds – Serving Better Digital Ads To Humans

Oct 13, 2016 / By Nagarajan Chakaravarthy

The care advertisers take in order to delicately craft a targeted message that speaks to the meticulously selected audience; the time and effort put into planning the perfect timing, placements, and selecting the right publishers – are all but futile activities unless you can make sure that the ads are actually delivered to and seen by humans and not fraud bots.

As the world becomes increasingly digital; the commitment towards digital advertising is also keeping pace. Internet advertising generated revenue of close to USD 50 Billion in 2014. It is disheartening to learn that after putting in so much efforts into creating a perfect combination of message, time, and place – approximately 36% of ad-traffic received is non-human (Source: IAB). And, this is just a conservative estimate – some reports state that the amount of suspicious desktop activities is as high as 61% (Source: Solve Media). Although, there are innumerable tools and technologies to detect such types of impressions and click frauds, but the money lost by advertisers keeps rising every year.

iOPEX works closely with the online media and advertising industry and we understand the areas where advertisers and publishers can ensure that they get real traffic instead of bots. Here are some ways to minimize frauds and get closer to the desired results:

Identifying fraud

Fraudulent activities could be from computer programs (bots) that sit as a malicious spyware on unsuspecting desktops and generate illegitimate impressions and clicks. These could also be in the form of incentivized browsing generating fraudulent clicks. It is the job of the suppliers, ad networks, ad exchanges, and publishers to ensure that such activities are monitored and curtailed. IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) publishes an IAB/ABC International Spiders & Bots List which enlists IP addresses and publishers known for fraud – this is the first place to start. Using multiple tools to calculate ad effectiveness can also point out frauds when results of various tools do not match.

Tracking the sources

If you cannot determine the URLs or IP addresses from where your ad traffic seems to be coming from, then chances of fraud are very high. To ensure trust, publishers and ad networks must accurately give out the placements and timing of ads and the real details of the sources of all the clicks and impressions. This will not only give peace of mind to the advertisers, but will also enable effective advertising, thereby increasing brand value of the publishers as well

Using geo-targeting

A great technique to reduce fraud is to use geo-targeted ads. Fraudsters cannot identify the geo-targeting parameters of your ads. Since most of the fraudulent traffic comes from Asian and Eastern European regions, you can clearly identify traffic sources from places where your ads were never targeted for. For instance, you have targeted North American region for your ads and you get clicks from Philippines, then you can accurately label it as a fraud.

Selecting the right partners

If your intent is to generate real results that increase your revenue and not to get inflated results that might impress once, but fail to deliver value; then you must invest in identifying genuine partners, suppliers, and technologies in the digital advertising domain. Partners who offer complete process transparency, have refined fraud detection technologies and methodologies, are compliant with industry standards, and monitor traffic accurately would be a better bet than blind traffic generating networks.

Creating content that engages with real humans

A surefire way to reduce frauds is by generating content that engages humans by creating ad units that let the user design their own experience. For instance, users can create their own travel plans, or build their own look, or design a dream car – through such ads. Bots cannot engage with such ads as humans can, thereby giving a unique advantage and assurance to advertisers and publishers.

There are many ways through with fraud can be further reduced. iOPEX has partnered with companies that help identify, track and reduce online advertising fraud, thus helping clients with maximizing their ad revenues. We also have best practices that we follow, to detect and curtail fraud. iOPEX offers future-ready and end-to-end Ad Lifecycle Management Services to both the advertisers and publishers. Our Unified Media Platform comprising of iMediaDesk & iMediaPlace, acts as an optimization accelerator and helps media entities get the maximum benefits from their investments.