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Click Fraud Less Than 10%?

Posted on 10.31.2006
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Via, the debate rages on over the amount of click fraud within the pay-per-click industry. Whichever side you are leaning towards (high or low) it's interesting that no one has come flat out and said which industries are more prevalent to click fraud or addressed the fact that certain advertisers may be more of a target than others.

Either way, according to Shuman Ghosemajumder, business product manager for trust and safety at Google, “Some firms appear to make the problem larger than it is,” he said at a press briefing in Dublin last week. Ghosemajumder suggested advertisers focus on the return on investment that their online adverts give and when there is an unexplained drop in this figure, they conclude — often erroneously in Google’s view — that this is due to click fraud. There's obviously a lot of logic in that statement when you look at the sheer volume of click tracking and fraud prevention software that is available and marketed to online businesses large and small.

Previously, in the absence of hard and fast data some advertisers used third-party companies to provide estimates of click fraud. Figures varied between 14% and 20% of clicks as being fraudulent but Ghosemajumder said these estimates were “exaggerated”. “The total number of invalid clicks on average is in the single digits, quarter over quarter,” he said. My guess is that Google is more of a target than anyone else for those perpretrating fraud which means that click fraud is probably in the low single digits at other pay-per-click providers.

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