Frauds on mobile applications accounted for almost 85 percent of the total frauds from India. In 2017 alone, mobile advertisements robbed Indians of $350 million.
India was home to nearly 9 percent of the world's digital advertising frauds, amounting to nearly $1.63 billion or Rs 11,300 crore, according to a report by market research firm TechARC. Such frauds are known to happen when agencies use bots and fake profiles to inflate the impact of a campaign and charge extra fees.
"The impact of digital ad fraud now goes beyond diminishing the returns on marketing spends and can jeopardise the entire digital transformation journey, hampering brand equity, relevance and positioning," said Faisal Kawoosa, chief analyst at TechARC.
More than 50 percent of these frauds have been seen in the Indian digital commerce industry. Advertising agencies want to create the impression of high customer engagement and retention. In other digital commercial spaces like banking and entertainment, clients are made to believe that they have more customers than they do.
Frauds on mobile applications accounted for almost 85 percent of the total frauds from India. In 2017 alone, mobile advertisements robbed Indians of $350 million. But websites are not spared, mostly impacted by misuse of keywords and fake news. "Web platforms are more susceptible to frauds as in several organisations, the digital teams are primarily focusing on the app leaving the web space vulnerable," the report stated.
The newest avenue being explored by advertisers is the video ads and the number of frauds in that space is increasing gradually. The report estimates the ad frauds to grow at 23 percent in 2019 due to an advancement in cheating techniques.
To counter this, companies are starting to pre-approve the websites where their advertisements will appear. Google blocked over 3 lakh publishers from its display network in 2018. Budget carrier IndiGo had encountered fake ads with its name talking of fake discounts and job vacancies.The report said that businesses who have a solution for this in place have higher levels of customer engagements, as their ability to prevent abuse builds their credibility and relevance of content.