Reasons You Should Take Digital Ad Fraud Seriously - Offer18

Reasons You Should Take Digital Ad Fraud Seriously


Fully known as advertising fraud, ad fraud is a deliberate and malicious activity that aims to change online advertisements' outcomes with the primary goal of generating revenue. 
It’s just like fraud in any industry, where someone thinks they’re smarter than others and tries to cheat the system just to extract some bucks. 

Why you should take Ad-Fraud Seriously

Ad fraud might seem to be just one problem, but it creates several negative effects that can hurt everyone – marketers, agencies, publishers, and technology suppliers. Here are three adverse impacts of ad-fraud. 

  • Loss of Money:
    The most obvious impact of ad fraud is that brands waste money on ad campaigns that include a significant amount of fraudulent impressions. According to a report released in 2019 by the White Ops and the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the amount of money lost due to ad fraud is estimated at $5.8 billion. Sadly, it’s unlikely that ad fraud will end anytime soon as the World Federation of Advertisers predicts that digital ad fraud would soon become the world’s second-biggest market for organized crime by 2025 – first being the drug trade. 
  • Loss of Confidence by Brands:
    With a significant amount of web traffic coming from non-human actors, companies are also at the receiving end of this challenge. It makes it impossible for them to build relationships with real potential customers. This may also dampen branding efforts since the ads do not reach the target audience, which will, in turn, reduce the value of legitimate publishers. 
  • Complicates Data Analysis:
    Because ad fraud runs over the thousands of advertising ecosystems, it can be quite difficult to evaluate campaign performance since human and non-human activity for ads, and site visits are mixed in reports. This makes it nearly impossible to develop an effective roadmap to boost advertising performance. 

How to Prevent Ad-Fraud

If you’re looking to get the most out of your ad budget, you need to know how to prevent ad fraud. Here are some trusted methods:

Trusted DSPs only:

A demand-side platform is a system that allows for the management of advertisements across real-time bidding networks through one interface. Follow independent reports that evaluate DSPs periodically and use only those with high ratings.

Identify Abnormalities:

Try to stay vigilant so you can identify abnormalities in your traffic metrics. Here are some red flags to look out for: 

  • Abnormally high CTRs for your adword campaign 
  • Abnormal spikes in web traffic 
  • Low scores on engagement metrics 

Keep in mind that if it looks too good to be true, it’s probably not. 

Use Anti-Fraud Tools:

Consider using dedicated anti-fraud tools if you don’t have the time to monitor IPs and sub-publishers for possible ad fraud detection. They can help detect bots, scripts, malicious competitors, and manual click frauds in a good time

Target Specific Audience on Social Media:

If you want to drastically cut down on the possibility of ad fraud, consider ad targeting on social media platforms. It allows you to reach your target audience easily while eliminating the need for third-party publishers.


Your digital campaign will only be successful if your ad spend is used to reach real people. Preventing ad fraud helps you get the best bang out of your bucks by limiting fraudsters' influence and the negative effects of their activities. 

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