How can targeted ads do harm?

How to protect yourself against click fraud

Under click fraud (German: "click fraud") one understands the targeted manipulation of advertising accounting systems through artificially generated clicks on banner ads, text ads or affiliate links. As a rule, fraudsters use the accounting system "Pay per click“In which sales are generated by the fact that a user actively clicks on an advertising medium. If this interaction is brought about artificially and without interest in the advertised offer, this has consequences for the advertiser or a publisher on whose website the advertisement appears, depending on the objective of the click fraud. While the advertiser loses cash through click fraud because he is responsible for useless clicks paid, a website operator seems at first glance to benefit from click fraud - true to the motto "more clicks equals higher commission". But publishers on whose websites Click Fraud has been registered run the risk of being excluded from advertising cooperations. Thus, the following result Incentives to simulate clicks:

  • the creeping of achievements
  • gaining a competitive advantage

If click fraud comes from the publisher, the Generation of additional income in the centre. For this purpose, the number of clicks on the ads on your own website is determined by different manual or software-based click fraud measures elevated. In addition, click fraud is used to provide advertisements for specific keywords with additional clicks and thus drive up advertising prices for subject areas. In both cases, the click fraud is at the expense of the advertiser. But click fraud is also a thorn in the side of the operators of large advertising networks such as Google AdWords or Bing Ads, as the targeted manipulation of the billing systems Advertiser Trust lasting damage. The sanctions that publishers have to expect if they are convicted of click fraud are correspondingly drastic.

A manipulation of the number of clicks is therefore less likely to come from the advertising partners themselves than from competitors who have joined forces Competitive advantage want to procure. These can be other advertisers who use click fraud to unnecessarily burden the advertising budget of competitors or, if possible, to exhaust it completely. The aim of this method is to drive competing ads out of the search engine or from relevant websites. But publishers also sometimes try to manipulate advertisements on a competing website with artificially generated clicks in order to provoke the operator of the advertising network to exclude the competitor.

A special form of click fraud that does not relate to paid advertisements focuses on generating artificial views on video portals such as YouTube, Vimeo or Dailymotion. The aim of this method is to artificially push clips in order to generate a greater reach and thus increase advertising revenue. Click fraud is also used in social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. The main focus is on bought likes.