The Alliance for Audited Media has launched a third-party audit program for digital publishers, which the organization says is a key step in the fight against digital ad fraud.
The AAM Digital Publisher Audit focuses on verifying publishers’ traffic sources. It analyzes publishers’ business operations, traffic sourcing policies and monitoring website traffic. It currently has 1,750 publisher partners.
The audit program would help assure marketers the audited sites they invest in are “legitimately delivering human audiences,” according to the organization. “The program generates trust between marketers, agencies and publishers through independent audits,” AAM CEO Tom Drouillard stated.
The program requires large publishers to use technology vendors accredited by the MRC for sophisticated invalid traffic (SIVT) detection.
“The marketing industry has made significant progress in bringing transparency and accountability to digital media buying, but the war on ad fraud continues,” stated Bob Liodice, CEO of the Association of National Advertisers. “We need a set of comprehensive solutions.”
The independent audit program is supported by the Association of National Advertisers, which collaborated with the AAM, Media Rating Council and the Trustworthy Accountability Group “to align their anti-fraud programs to create a complementary set of assurance solutions,” according to a statement.
The audit program is free to AAM’s publisher members through the end of 2021, according to Drouillard, in an effort to grow the audited digital media inventory.
“As a not-for-profit organization, we want to ensure that cost is not a barrier for widespread publisher adoption to maximize this opportunity for marketers,” Drouillard stated.
Publishers that successfully complete the audit may also earn independent validation for TAG’s Certified Against Fraud program.
AAM developed the audit with the support of more than 100 websites from nine major publishing companies in the U.S. and Canada, including Meredith Corporation, American City Business Journals and The Globe and Mail. A list of participating publishers is available on AAM’s website.
The organization is also working with the IAB Tech Lab to distribute the list via its compliance registry, which will enable bidding on AAM-audited domains.
The AAM also measures magazine media audiences across platforms in its quarterly "Magazine Media 360°" report.