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Mobile Ad Fraud

Mobile ad fraud encompasses a set of techniques employed by fraudsters to deliberately serve mobile ads that have no potential of being viewed by humans, thus artificially inflating the number of ads served and subsequently making money from mobile advertising spend. Ad fraud is an industry-wide problem that increases the degree of risk involved with scaling mobile advertising campaigns to non-direct sources.

How is mobile ad fraud different in Android and iOS?

There is a conventional belief that iOS offers a safer environment than Android. The major reason is cited to the open source availability of Android for the device manufacturer, whereas iOS adopts a ‘walled garden’ approach which hardly gives any customization option for third-parties. Regardless of the general belief, fraudsters in the mobile advertising look for the opportunity to prey upon the both – however not equally.

What are the major challenges in detecting ad fraud?

Luckily there are a number of companies out there that specialize in detecting ad fraud, with most offering a blacklist solution that prevents fraudulent activity from affecting future online advertising campaigns.

Assuming you manage your own display advertising campaigns, in a self-service manner, you can detect ad fraud without the use of any sophisticated tools. It simply requires some analysis and common sense. See full article for more details.