Episode 15: Ad Fraud and what you can do about it

This episode looks at the impact of fraudulent traffic on digital marketing. We’ll talk about how big a problem it is for publishers, ad platforms and advertisers. We will step through what advertisers can do to make their campaigns less vulnerable to attacks by fraudsters, and give thoughts on how to give your non-marketing colleagues reasons why it’s still good business to advertise, in spite of problems with ad fraud.


Ideas and Products mentioned in the episode

Humans Account for Less than 40% of Global Web Traffic.

Pixel Stuffing (see ‘pixel stuffing’)

Ad Stacking 

Misrepresentation ad fraud (video) 

Ad injections

Google Data Centres

Ad Fraud Bots reported by White Ops 


Media Rating Council (MRC)

TAG standards

Blade Runner Voight-Kampff machine 

Polygraph Machine    


Google Tag Manager Conversion Linker (Video) – incorrectly called it Conversion Looker in the audio.

Anti-drug PSA 

Arthur Andersen & Enron conflict of interest

Script to find How much of your traffic uses adblockers

People mentioned in the episode:

Bob Hoffman (adcontrarian) 

Mark Schaefer 

Scott Stratten

Gabe Leydon 

Augustine Fou 


To see invalid traffic numbers and percentages in your Google Ads account:

  1. login to your account and navigate to the campaign level
  2. Click the Columns icon and add the invalid interaction data columns
  3. If there are clicks you consider invalid that are not reported, you can request an invalid traffic investigation. Details are at the bottom of this page: https://www.google.com/ads/adtrafficquality/what-you-can-do.html

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