Online spending on ads has overtaken the traditional forms of advertising spending. In 2019, for instance, total digital ad expenditure in the US surpassed print, TV, and radio spending by $20 billion. Brands are now, more than ever before, willing to increase their online advertising budgets.
Unfortunately, this e-marketer’s nirvana is facing a massive threat from online fraudsters. An army of bots has stepped into the market and is reaping huge rewards from the gold rush. These bots are stacking up false ad impressions to maximize advertising dollar revenue.
Cybercriminals have found a new source of income in digital ad spending. It is estimated that the costs of advertising fraud will peak in the next four years. According to Statista data, this fraudulent activity that cost businesses $19 billion in 2018 and will cause them losses to the tune of $44 billion by 2022.
High costs of online ad fraud
The rise of fraudulent digital advertising is so alarming that some ad campaigns that cost advertisers huge chunks of advertising budgets never are viewed by any human. In the US, over 18% of the ad traffic to online ads has been from bots.
The situation is becoming very disconcerting to ad agencies that have been preparing to make the significant shift from traditional models of advertising to the new digital types.
The World Federation of Advertisers has given this stern warning:
Should the situation remain unchecked, online ad fraud will turn out to be the second-largest source of income for criminals globally.
At least 69% of advertisers have said that fraud in the digital advertising industry was the biggest hindrance to the growth of their ad budgets. Businesses have begun to perceive that much of the money that they are directing to online advertising ends up in the pockets of malicious players.
The anatomy of online ad fraud
Some advertisers think that bot attacks are still in the Stone Age. The truth is, a lot has changed since the days of rudimentary bots. The bot of today attacks with scary, sophisticated precision.
Fraudulent bot activity on ads is known as sophisticated invalid traffic (SIVT). Smart bots use complicated methods to defraud advertisers. They create invalid referrals, mask domains, and use other forms of clever viewability fraud.
Online ad fraud can also work through domain spoofing. Here, the scammer creates Iframes and hides them to allow the running of ads that consumers will never get to view. They also falsify and manipulate ad viewership location data.
Industry regulators have encouraged businesses to initiate surveillance mechanisms via the use of honeypots, traps, ad proxies, and evaluated captcha methods and report fraud.
How to improve on business ad verification with proxies
Ad verification ensures that ads appear on designated and appropriate sites. The process checks on fake ad clicks, impressions, and other forms of ad fraud. Ad verification processes such as ad vendor verification and localized ad verification require the use of ad proxies. Find more information here.
Ad vendor verification protects your business from ad fraud. In contrast, localized ad verification investigates how paid ads appear in different regions of the world.
Residential proxies are widely used in ad verification, gaining them the name of ad proxies. They are used to anonymously detect ad fraud and check on the landing pages of advertisers. They can also be utilized to improve ad performance.
The ad verification industry is on a never-ending race between the fraudsters and its ad manipulation and tracking surveillance systems.
The fraudsters come up with novel ways to outmaneuver the ad verifiers making it challenging to catch bot clicks consistently. Fraudsters will, for instance, use simple IP bans to ban data center proxy servers performing ad verification. A banned ad proxy will not access fraudster’s site.
The benefits of residential ad proxy pools
Residential proxies are, however, less susceptible to these types of bans, especially if they are from a rich rotational proxy pool.
Residential proxies are sold by internet service providers and therefore are a valid IP addresses. A keen fraudster will find it harder to detect them during the ad verification process than they would discover data center proxies.
If you, however, only use one residential proxy, your ad verification scripts will soon come under the scrutiny of the fraudsters. You need to keep rotating your proxies to mimic regular human and organic traffic. A rotating pool of ad proxies can bypass geolocation zoning without raising any alarm.
Ad proxies are, therefore, very useful when tracking the results of international ad campaigns. Your business can utilize them to ensure that ads are appearing as per agreement with an advertiser.
The benefits of ad verification
- The process will hinder fake ad clicks on your digital platform and protect your business’s advertisement budget
- Can help prevent business threats such as brand reputation by ensuring that your ads do not appear in websites that have illegal material
- Restricts ads that might promote illicit products, have malicious code that exhibits unwanted actions, which places your brand’s reputation in jeopardy.
Ad proxies are critical to the ad verification process. Use them to protect your brand name, reputation, and ensure that your advertising budget delivers maximum results.