Why Businesses Need to Understand Online Ad Fraud.
Where money is, the sharks are sure to follow. For crime and law enforcement, this is a maxim that holds anywhere, not the least of which is online activity. Online ad fraud is on the rise as the industry grows, statistics show. And online ad protocols make it easier for criminals to do it. The more there are online ads, the more opportunities created for these criminals to illegally skim profits off the legal trade.
Generally, advertisers are not protecting themselves fully from online fraud. Some put up a minimal line of defense, and cannot be bothered to study how security should be factored in to entire processes in the industry. Videos, for example, can have security apps as a built-in feature during their creation, and can have further security measures when they are embedded or uploaded. The cheaper it is, the better for everyone, it seems. Or the more open to copying a video, the more it will have hits. But security experts will beg to differ from this short-sighted view.
There are many ways to commit ad fraud, and the more technically proficient it is, the more chances it has of success. A thing like audience verification, for example, can be fraudulently made up in a pseudo-scientific metrics set-up that will sound “cool” to a company, not knowing that they have become victims of a scam. Companies, of course, will readily believe all the high percentage statistics “related” to their video ads. Online security expert Sean Crawford did some testing and found that unverified metrics have 35 percent higher success rates than those done by reputable auditing companies.
There are many aspects of online technology that can be utilized for scams. However, most people with access online do not, as a rule, pay too much attention to them – for one, the most obvious scams are laughably easy to avoid. Online ad fraud on the complex, tech-savvy level will therefore be that much harder to detect and combat. Advertisers have woken up to the fact that their ad spends are being compromised by false third party metrics that will mess up their data and get them to make decisions based on what they’d rather believe, than what the real situation is. Companies have started to band together and compare notes, but results may not come quickly enough – they need real teams of experts on board to beat the scammers at their own game.