Buzzcity and computer scientists partner to crush online click-fraud
23 March 2012
Mobile ad network Buzzcity has teamed up with computer scientists to conduct a study into cost-per-click (CPC) ad fraud.
The research initiative from Buzzcity and the National University of Singapore (NUS) will look at quality issues in the dominant ad model for mobile networks and the problems created by fraudulent site owners generating clicks on ads on their own sites to boost their earnings.
Scientists from NUS will analyse data provided by Buzzcity to try and create a mathematical model to identify better quality traffic for advertisers and improve earnings for publishers.
Buzzcity’s current systems look for potential fraud by looking at IP addresses, user sessions, carrier information and browser detection, but hope to take this further with this new partnership.
“As mobile traffic and internet advertising grows, click fraud has the potential to diminish the trust of advertisers who otherwise should be getting better returns from their growing mobile budgets,” said Buzzcity chief executive K F Lai.
CPC allows advertisers to gain information about their market as they only pay when a listing is clicked on as opposed to other models where they would pay for the listing itself. Normally however, each click is paid for regardless of whether the user makes it to the target site or not.
As well as manually clicking on ads, fraudulent webmasters can also alter the code in ads or set up bots to automate the process. Ad networks invest a lot of time and energy to stamp out the practise as it can result in promotional messages becoming unreliable and misleading.
David Hing, London