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Bots in Online Advertising

Com Olho's Risk Model:

A risk model maps and assess the advertiser’s vulnerability to identify ad fraud scenarios, with a scale defined as below:

Table 1: Com Olho's Risk Model

Table 2: Risk Levels

Com Olho's Risk Model
Risk Levels

What are Bots in Online Advertising?

Bots are basically the non-human traffic coming your way and imitating the real traffic. It can be defined as the artificial inflation of clicks and impressions on any website which may affect the revenue of the publisher. It may include unintended clicks or non-human traffic. 

IVT, generally, comprises of the following: 

  • Using automated tools for creating engagement with ads and ad impressions. 

  • Clicks and impressions on the ads placed on their websites by the publisher itself. 

  • Spamming websites using bots for the theft of information or any malicious activities. 

If you are a website owner, it becomes your duty to provide such content to your audience which your website visitors and advertisers can trust upon. After all, advertisers and readers are like the two wheels of the bicycle of a website’s bottom line because they help us in generating revenue over our content. And, Invalid Traffic (IVT) or bots can majorly affect your relationship with your audience.

How to find and eliminate Bots or Invalid Traffic (IVT)?

1. Examine all the reports of where the traffic is coming from and then act accordingly. Using a third party tool, you can also know the IP address and domains of bots/IVT. 


2. If you are using paid traffic for your website, then you may get more IVT. So, compare your traffic with different paid media and track what comes with least IVT. 


3. Traffic coming from the data centre is often confused with the authentic audience, but it is not always true. For instance, a new pilot blacklist is made by Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) which displays all the data centre IP addresses. You can use this blacklist to segregate the non-human attacks. 


4. Your demand partner can help you solve this issue. So, as soon as you detect bot/IVT, talk to them. ​

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