App ad fraud heading toward $1 billion problem
- There are at least 5,000 apps across mobile platforms that invisibly and secretly run ads whether the installed app has been launched or not, and some produce false clicks.
- Fraud detection firm Forensiq ran a 10-day study on 12 million devices running Android, iOS and Windows and found an estimated yearly loss of $857 million for in-app advertisers.
- This study is in-line with earlier research from Apsalar, which found global issues with app installation and transaction fraud.
In-app advertisers on mobile devices should be aware of a growing issue. Forensiq, a fraud detection company, ran a study on 12 million unique mobile devices running Android, iOS and Windows and identified more than 5,000 apps that engaged in app fraud by secretly and invisibly to the user running ads whether the app was actively launched or not. Some of the fraud included the app producing false clicks. Forensiq estimates this activity will cost in-app advertisers $857 million this year. These apps also create issues for the owner of the infected mobile phone by eating into data plans by constantly serving up the fraudulent ads.
App fraud overall is a global issue, as Marketing Dive earlier reported on research by Apsalar that found problems with app installation and transaction fraud, although the worst offenders in both categories tended to be located in the Asia Pacific region.