Invalid traffic (IVT) in open programmatic advertising averaged 17% globally across the desktop web, mobile web and mobile apps in this year’s second quarter, according to the latest report from fraud prevention/analytics firm Pixalate.
The desktop web had the highest average IVT rate, at 21%, followed by the mobile web at 16% and mobile apps at 13%.
Overall, 57% of invalid clicks were generated by click farms and datacenter IVT. On mobile apps, 20% of all invalid clicks were generated by click farms.
The 729 x 90 leaderboard ad size had an invalid click rate of 26% on mobile apps — two times higher than the total mobile app invalid click average (13%).
In terms of categories, desktop web domains in the health category had the highest rate of fraudulent ad clicks, at 44%. Entertainment, government, arts and regional desktop web domains all had IVT rates of about 30%.
“The sophisticated schemes deployed by ad fraudsters are not just generating fake traffic but fake clicks as well,” comments Amit Shetty, vice president of ad product, ad fraud at Pixalate. “Advertisers are willing to spend more for higher click-through rates, but this mindset should come with a heightened sense of scrutiny, as fraudsters always follow the money.”