Bots Don’t Buy – Ad Fraud Explained

04/28 By IAS team

Digital Ad Fraud Explained

Whether we like it or not, ad fraud exists in the digital ecosystem. To make digital campaigns successful, marketers need to ensure their ad spend is being used to reach real people. Digital ad fraud is any deliberate activity that prevents the proper delivery of ads to the intended audience, in the intended place. Most commonly taking the form or bots, or domain spoofing, ad fraud thrives by siphoning off money from advertising transactions. It can come in many forms, pretending to be humans browsing the internet or falsely representing low quality inventory, as high quality are some of the more common occurrences. 

Ad fraud is a problem that shows little sign of disappearing any time soon, but there are ways you can help the industry to beat the bots.

So, where are we at with ad fraud right now?

Considering brands in the UK are spending around £23.6bn on digital advertising, understandably they want to know their significant investment in digital is not going to waste. Fraudsters, however, have a slightly different idea. According to the IAB UK, £7.3bn was spent on display ads in H1 2019. Considering that fraud hovers around the 1% mark even when optimisations are being made, we can estimate at least £23 million of that UK spend was potentially intercepted by fraudsters. 

Fraud fluctuates depending on the country and the device. IAS sees from its H1 2019 Media Quality Report that fraud fluctuated from 0.4% – 11.7% depending on whether buyers implement an ad fraud prevention or detection strategy. Unsurprisingly, campaigns that do not utilise any ad fraud mitigation strategy attract the most fraud globally.

Ad fraud explained

So, why has it not been resolved, and what action can we all take to help stop it?  Tune in to our on-demand webinar and we will take you through:

  • Why fraud happens, and how fraudsters operate and get paid
  • What is ad fraud and what platforms does it affect
  • The many types of fraud and the evolving landscape fraudsters profit from
  • How you can proactively and effectively protect your investments

Download our complete fraud guide here or explore how IAS can support your fight against it.

Watch webinar on-demand