Opportunity and
Motive for Digital
Ad Fraud
Dr. Augustine Fou
http://linkd.in/augustinefou
acfou @mktsci .com
February 201...
Opportunity
-2-

Augustine Fou
Rise of Programmatic
As a greater proportion
of ads are bought and
sold automatically and
by algorithm through ad
exchange...
Motive
-4-

Augustine Fou
Extremely Profitable
“Highly Lucrative, Profitable
The aggregate ad revenue for the
sample of 596 sites was an
estimated $...
Humans Not
Required
-6-

Augustine Fou
Algo-Generated Sites
Source: more screen captures
http://picturesandbox.com/screengrab/grouped.php

-7-

Augustine Fou
Algo-Generated Pages
Characteristics
• Auto-generated by
bots, stuffed with search
keywords
• To attract organic search tr...
Bad Guys Put Up Sites
site = analyzecanceradvice .com

site = missomoms.com

19 blocked ads on page

-9-

Augustine Fou
Load Tons of Ads
http://modernbab y.com/
http://interiorcom plex.com/

- 10 -

Augustine Fou
Load Pages with Bots
Source: Google Digital Attack Map

Source: Wired

- 11 -

Augustine Fou
Bots Type Search Term
healthsiteproduc tionalways.com

buy eye cream online

- 12 -

Augustine Fou
Bots Click Search Ad

Olay.com ad
in #1 position

- 13 -

Augustine Fou
Motive for Video
Ad Fraud
- 14 -

Augustine Fou
Video Ads Are Lucrative
Video ad CPMs
are $8 $12, which
means they are
more than 10X
more lucrative
than display or
mobile...
Ad Revenue Share
YouTube Ends The 'Sweetheart Deals'
Enjoyed By TV And Film Studios
YouTube restructured the terms in part...
Partner Channels

Source: comScore July 17, 2013
- 17 -

Augustine Fou
Display and Video Ads

- 18 -

Augustine Fou
Video Ad Budget Wasted
In other
words, the
clients' ads had
been placed on
porn sites, and
the clicks they
generated were
...
Ad Fraud Detection
and Mitigation
- 20 -

Augustine Fou
Digital Ad Forensics Process
Preliminary Scan
Sizing of
ad fraud

Forensic Analysis

Maintenance

• Technology Tools
• Sta...
Dr. Augustine Fou – Digital Forensics
“I advise clients on optimizing
advertising across all channels. Using
advanced tech...
Related Articles
Digital Ad Fraud Briefing
By: Augustine Fou December 2013

Fake YouTube Videos
By: Augustine Fou, Decembe...
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Motive for Digital Ad Fraud Investigated by Augustine Fou

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Bad guys have both the opportunity and motive for large scale digital ad fraud, especially as the industry and big advertisers continue to let it happen. It will take a coordinated effort among various stakeholders to put a dent in this global plague.

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Motive for Digital Ad Fraud Investigated by Augustine Fou

  1. 1. Opportunity and Motive for Digital Ad Fraud Dr. Augustine Fou http://linkd.in/augustinefou acfou @mktsci .com February 2014 -1- Augustine Fou
  2. 2. Opportunity -2- Augustine Fou
  3. 3. Rise of Programmatic As a greater proportion of ads are bought and sold automatically and by algorithm through ad exchanges, it has become far easier for bad guys to ―sell‖ fake traffic and impression inventory to unsuspecting, mainstrea m brand advertisers. Source: Digital Citizens Alliance Study, Feb 2014 -3- Augustine Fou
  4. 4. Motive -4- Augustine Fou
  5. 5. Extremely Profitable “Highly Lucrative, Profitable The aggregate ad revenue for the sample of 596 sites was an estimated $56.7 million for Q3 of 2013, projecting out to $226.7 million dollars annually, with average profit margins of 83%, ranging from 80% to as high as 94%.‖ Source: Digital Citizens Alliance Study, Feb 2014 -5- Augustine Fou
  6. 6. Humans Not Required -6- Augustine Fou
  7. 7. Algo-Generated Sites Source: more screen captures http://picturesandbox.com/screengrab/grouped.php -7- Augustine Fou
  8. 8. Algo-Generated Pages Characteristics • Auto-generated by bots, stuffed with search keywords • To attract organic search traffic • Not human readable (low instance of natural phrases) • Stuffed with affiliate links and display ads -8- Augustine Fou
  9. 9. Bad Guys Put Up Sites site = analyzecanceradvice .com site = missomoms.com 19 blocked ads on page -9- Augustine Fou
  10. 10. Load Tons of Ads http://modernbab y.com/ http://interiorcom plex.com/ - 10 - Augustine Fou
  11. 11. Load Pages with Bots Source: Google Digital Attack Map Source: Wired - 11 - Augustine Fou
  12. 12. Bots Type Search Term healthsiteproduc tionalways.com buy eye cream online - 12 - Augustine Fou
  13. 13. Bots Click Search Ad Olay.com ad in #1 position - 13 - Augustine Fou
  14. 14. Motive for Video Ad Fraud - 14 - Augustine Fou
  15. 15. Video Ads Are Lucrative Video ad CPMs are $8 $12, which means they are more than 10X more lucrative than display or mobile ads. Source: Turn, Inc. October 2013 - 15 - Augustine Fou
  16. 16. Ad Revenue Share YouTube Ends The 'Sweetheart Deals' Enjoyed By TV And Film Studios YouTube restructured the terms in partnerships it has with TV networks and major film studios. The new terms put an end to "sweetheart deals," wherein TV and film producers would keep up to 70% of ad revenues — now their share has been reduced to 55%. YouTube says it hopes to have all its partnerships, which includes CBS and Warner Bros., transitioned to the new revenue split by January 2014. Source: BusinessInsider November 4, 2013 - 16 - Augustine Fou
  17. 17. Partner Channels Source: comScore July 17, 2013 - 17 - Augustine Fou
  18. 18. Display and Video Ads - 18 - Augustine Fou
  19. 19. Video Ad Budget Wasted In other words, the clients' ads had been placed on porn sites, and the clicks they generated were disguised to look like traffic from mainstream web brands. Source: Business Insider Dec 2013 - 19 - Augustine Fou
  20. 20. Ad Fraud Detection and Mitigation - 20 - Augustine Fou
  21. 21. Digital Ad Forensics Process Preliminary Scan Sizing of ad fraud Forensic Analysis Maintenance • Technology Tools • Statistical analysis • Budget shifts • Further optimization Implementation FREE $$$ $ Preliminary analysis of paid campaigns and analytics to determine magnitude of the ad fraud impacting client. Creating recommended list of changes, including list of sites to exclude in each ad channel. Subscribe to triangulated, cross-industry database of ―ad fraud offenders‖ to continuously update blacklists and whitelists. Augustine Fou - 21 -
  22. 22. Dr. Augustine Fou – Digital Forensics “I advise clients on optimizing advertising across all channels. Using advanced technical forensic techniques and custom tchnology tools, we detect and mitigate ad fraud and waste.” 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 - 22 - @acfou Augustine Fou
  23. 23. Related Articles Digital Ad Fraud Briefing By: Augustine Fou December 2013 Fake YouTube Videos By: Augustine Fou, December 2013 How Display Fraud Works By: Augustine Fou, May 2013 Fake Linkedin Profiles By: Augustine Fou, December 2013 How Click Fraud Works By: Augustine Fou, November 2013 Fake Facebook Profiles By: Augustine Fou, Dec 2013 The Magnitude of Digital Ad Fraud By: Augustine Fou, November 2013 Fake Twitter Accounts By: Augustine Fou, August 2013 ROI Case for Solving Ad Fraud By: Augustine Fou January 2014 - 23 - Augustine Fou

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