Facebook Ad
Fraud Corroborated
Dr. Augustine Fou
acfou [at] mktsci.com
http://linkd.in/augustinefou
February 2014
-1-

Aug...
First Hand Data
Corroborates Veritasium

-2-

Augustine Fou
Set Up a Company Page

https://www.facebook.com/marketingsc
ienceconsulting

-3-

Augustine Fou
Page Like Ad Campaign

-4-

Augustine Fou
Fake Profiles Liked Me

-5-

Augustine Fou
How Do I Know?
• No recent activity
• Misspellings, made-up names “Jane Boston”
• Random images used in updates (e.g. stoc...
Site Click Ad Campaign
Average click through rate 0.042%

-7-

Augustine Fou
Fake Facebook
Profiles
-8-

Augustine Fou
Fake Profiles on Facebook

plagiarized or stock image

-9-

Augustine Fou
Fake Facebook Profiles

- 10 -

Augustine Fou
Bot generated pages
on Facebook

using many of the same images and randomized content
- 11 -

Augustine Fou
Fake Likes on Facebook
How much do you like courgettes, the
green vegetable Americans call zucchini?
According to one Face...
The Problem Has Been
Known For a While
- 13 -

Augustine Fou
February 10, 2014 Video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVfHeWTKjag

- 14 -

Augustine Fou
BBC Reports Significant
“Like” Fraud (2012)
“These [fake accounts] all
seemed to have an
enormous number of
Likes, with ma...
TechCrunch Reports Massive
Facebook Click Fraud (2009)
“Tracking 202 is telling me
11 clicks….Facebook is
telling me 145. ...
Facebook Display Ads
Can Work for Branding
(assuming they were viewed)
- 17 -

Augustine Fou
Facebook 7–9 Ads /pageview
2012
2011
2010

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

Source: Facebook Display Ads | go-Digital Blog
- 18 -

Augus...
Auto Refresh Ads
Inflating ad impressions served

Same page, but ads are auto-refreshed every 2 mins; 7 more ad impression...
Users ignore Facebook ads

Source: Mashable, April 2012
- 20 -

Augustine Fou
Eye tracking proves …
“The ads to the right
are only noticed by
23% of the
respondents, and
they spend only
0.5 seconds on...
What Advertisers
Can/Should Do?
- 22 -

Augustine Fou
Areas of Optimization
1. Don’t just pay on a CPM basis for tonnage of impressions; if
you have some other performance metr...
Dr. Augustine Fou – Digital Consigliere
“I advise clients on optimizing
advertising across all channels. One
main area of ...
Related Articles
Digital Ad Fraud Briefing
By: Augustine Fou December 2013

Fake YouTube Videos
By: Augustine Fou, Decembe...
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Facebook Ad Fraud Corroborated by Augustine Fou Ad Fraud Forensics

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Facebook ads have had its detractors for many years. This is the latest round of data that shows that even legit ads purchased directly from Facebook results in "page likes" by fake accounts, which are not only useless, but also may have long-term harmful effects.

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Facebook Ad Fraud Corroborated by Augustine Fou Ad Fraud Forensics

  1. 1. Facebook Ad Fraud Corroborated Dr. Augustine Fou acfou [at] mktsci.com http://linkd.in/augustinefou February 2014 -1- Augustine Fou
  2. 2. First Hand Data Corroborates Veritasium -2- Augustine Fou
  3. 3. Set Up a Company Page https://www.facebook.com/marketingsc ienceconsulting -3- Augustine Fou
  4. 4. Page Like Ad Campaign -4- Augustine Fou
  5. 5. Fake Profiles Liked Me -5- Augustine Fou
  6. 6. How Do I Know? • No recent activity • Misspellings, made-up names “Jane Boston” • Random images used in updates (e.g. stock images, plaigiarized images) • No friends • Thousands of likes, of completely unrelated things • Porn related images (e.g. selfies) • All images are promotional (promote event) -6- Augustine Fou
  7. 7. Site Click Ad Campaign Average click through rate 0.042% -7- Augustine Fou
  8. 8. Fake Facebook Profiles -8- Augustine Fou
  9. 9. Fake Profiles on Facebook plagiarized or stock image -9- Augustine Fou
  10. 10. Fake Facebook Profiles - 10 - Augustine Fou
  11. 11. Bot generated pages on Facebook using many of the same images and randomized content - 11 - Augustine Fou
  12. 12. Fake Likes on Facebook How much do you like courgettes, the green vegetable Americans call zucchini? According to one Facebook page devoted to them, hundreds of people find them delightful enough to click the "like" button – even with dozens of other pages about courgettes to choose from. There's just one problem: the liking was fake, done by a team of low-paid workers in Dhaka, Bangladesh, whose boss demanded just $15 per thousand "likes" at his "click farm". Workers punching the keys might be on a three-shift system, and be paid as little as $120 a year. Source: Business Insider, August 2, 2013 - 12 - Augustine Fou
  13. 13. The Problem Has Been Known For a While - 13 - Augustine Fou
  14. 14. February 10, 2014 Video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVfHeWTKjag - 14 - Augustine Fou
  15. 15. BBC Reports Significant “Like” Fraud (2012) “These [fake accounts] all seemed to have an enormous number of Likes, with many totaling more than 10,000 and at a “Liking” rate of more than 500 a month.” Source: Search Engine Journal July 2012 - 15 - Augustine Fou
  16. 16. TechCrunch Reports Massive Facebook Click Fraud (2009) “Tracking 202 is telling me 11 clicks….Facebook is telling me 145. That’s way off .” “Tested on 3 different servers at 3 different DCs (not a network issue).” “FB click fraud update: ratio is now EXACTLY 10:1. 10 clicks reported on FB, 1 click on prosper.” Source: http://techcrunch.com/2009/06/21/facebook-click-fraud-enraging-advertisers/ - 16 - Augustine Fou
  17. 17. Facebook Display Ads Can Work for Branding (assuming they were viewed) - 17 - Augustine Fou
  18. 18. Facebook 7–9 Ads /pageview 2012 2011 2010 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Source: Facebook Display Ads | go-Digital Blog - 18 - Augustine Fou
  19. 19. Auto Refresh Ads Inflating ad impressions served Same page, but ads are auto-refreshed every 2 mins; 7 more ad impressions - 19 - Augustine Fou
  20. 20. Users ignore Facebook ads Source: Mashable, April 2012 - 20 - Augustine Fou
  21. 21. Eye tracking proves … “The ads to the right are only noticed by 23% of the respondents, and they spend only 0.5 seconds on the ads.” Source: Mashable 12/29/2011 … users don’t look at the ads. - 21 - Augustine Fou
  22. 22. What Advertisers Can/Should Do? - 22 - Augustine Fou
  23. 23. Areas of Optimization 1. Don’t just pay on a CPM basis for tonnage of impressions; if you have some other performance metric which measures actual actions that users take, use that instead 2. Pay on a CPC basis if you can, and use “conversion tracking” provided by Facebook on your page or website 3. Move beyond counting the number of likes and use some other metric that is more indicative of intent to purchase if possible. - 23 - Augustine Fou
  24. 24. Dr. Augustine Fou – Digital Consigliere “I advise clients on optimizing advertising across all channels. One main area of focus is reducing ad waste due to fraud – fake impressions, clicks, leads, and sales.” FORMER CHIEF DIGITAL OFFICER, HCG (OMNICOM) MCKINSEY CONSULTANT CLIENT SIDE / AGENCY SIDE EXPERIENCE PROFESSOR AND COLUMNIST ENTREPRENEUR / SMALL BUSINESS OWNER PHD MATERIALS SCIENCE (MIT '95) AT AGE 23 ClickZ Articles: http://bit.ly/augustine-fou-clickz Slideshares: http://bit.ly/augustine-fou-slideshares LinkedIn: http://linkd.in/augustinefou - 24 - @acfou Augustine Fou
  25. 25. Related Articles Digital Ad Fraud Briefing By: Augustine Fou December 2013 Fake YouTube Videos By: Augustine Fou, December 2013 Ad Fraud Fighting Techniques By: Augustine Fou October 2013 Fake Linkedin Profiles By: Augustine Fou, December 2013 How Display Fraud Works By: Augustine Fou, May 2013 Fake Facebook Profiles By: Augustine Fou, Dec 2013 How Click Fraud Works By: Augustine Fou, November 2013 Fake Twitter Accounts By: Augustine Fou, August 2013 The Magnitude of Digital Ad Fraud By: Augustine Fou, November 2013 An Ecosystem of Digital Ad Fraud By: Augustine Fou, October 2013 - 25 - Augustine Fou

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