One in Four Clicks "Bogus" Says Anchor Intelligence Report

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So what’s up with click fraud these days? A lot and none of it’s good. Anchor Intelligence released its “Traffic Quality Report: 2009 Year in Review" today. The network saw the average attempted click fraud rate jump by nearly 40% from 18.6% in Q3 to 25.7% in Q4.

Some additional highlights from the report include:
- Attempted click fraud increased overall in 2009 as click fraudsters increasingly leveraged botnets to automate high velocity traffic and coordinate traffic from click fraud rings.
- In 2009, the five countries with the highest attempted click fraud rates were Vietnam, U.S., Egypt, Canada, and Australia. In particular, the U.S. and Canada accounted for the vast majority of traffic volume, making these two countries the largest sources of attempted click fraud by volume.

Here are a few highlights related specifically to the fourth quarter:
- The average attempted click fraud rate increased in the fourth quarter of 2009 as a result of greater activity by click fraudsters looking to take advantage of the surge in holiday ad spend online.

- Egypt became the country with the highest attempted click fraud rate (38.7%), followed closely by Australia (38.4%) and the U.S. (29.8%). Attempted click fraud within these countries resulted primarily from a distinct number of IP addresses with automated, high-velocity traffic and large-scale, coordinated click fraud rings.

Over the course of 2009, Anchor claimed to save advertisers more than $35 million by identifying click fraud in real time, before it could impact advertiser spend.

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2 comments

GregC 01-19-2010 12:31 PM

The question then becomes, how to we (as small business owners) detect and prevent click fraud?

Part of me wonders if Google, Yahoo!, and Bing really care that much about preventing it.  They may say they do, but it's money in their pocket; why would they stop it?

Peter A. Prestipino 01-21-2010 1:59 PM

Keep in mind that Anchor provides click fraud monitoring services so when you're reading a report of this nature you should take that into account. Google has said repeatedly that the cost of click-fraud is "baked-in" to the cost per click, but I'd agree that they don't have too much incentive to make it stop.

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