Ways To Identify And Tackle Click Fraud

The world of e-commerce has seen quite a bit of frauds over the years. As fraudulent activities have become rampant in many parts of online transactions, several attempts have been made to come up with ways that can help identify and stop some click frauds. There are plenty of ways that you can use to identify click fraud and also handle it appropriately. You are going to find a few interesting and effective techniques that can help you identify click fraud.

Before we start talking about methods to identify click fraud, let us first understand what type of click fraud there exists. According to Google, there are two types of click frauds: Ad click, i.e., when your website shows ads on your web page, but no click happens, and PPC (pay-per-click) click, which involves clicking on an ad, but clicking is not necessary.

Types of Clicks

When someone clicks on any advert or advertisement, he gets redirected to another website. This way, those advertisements show up only on his webpage and nothing else, except for this one. In this case, click fraud is called “ad fraud”, and most people will be unaware of this type.

Here, in these websites, it works on your web browser. By checking out the web pages, you can see the banner ads of whatever products you want. When you click on it, your device sends an information request to the advertiser’s server, and the advertiser gives it a number of impressions. If you don’t look at any product, then click fraud will never happen. However, if you do look at something without looking anything, sometimes, other websites show ads that appear on other sites. These kinds of ads will appear both on your web page and on the various sites of your company. Those adverts will give all the impression of your product.

Another kind of fraud is known as “Paid Links” fraud. It is mostly related to paid promotions or affiliate marketing. A person who buys links from a seller, creates links for the products, and sells them, has a chance to click on one of the links. Then when they visit the site, they get redirected to a different website or webpage with the link to buy the same product on their site, just as they did before. But instead of clicking ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Download’, they receive a notification message saying that the page is not available anymore. That is why “Paid Links” or “Adwords’ are the latest trend in e-commerce business. They are very popular and attract more customers than genuine ones.

You can check whether a URL is secure or not by using tools available. Apart from the above, you can check whether a domain is secure or not by visiting https://securefirefox.org/ and try the test button

A quick way to figure out if a website is safe is to make sure that when you see a specific keyword on a web page. For example, a random web page may show a banner ad for Airpods, but after some time, you will see an image of airpods everywhere or the name “Airpods” and nothing else. So you can say that it is safe. Another method can be used to identify click fraud: the use of DNS record lookup like IP address lookup.

Here is a working example:

For example, when you browse through Amazon’s search engine, and you enter any keywords like “pcs”, it displays ads of PC accessories such as flashlights, keyboards, mice, etc., to show that the product is “pcs”. Therefore, for anyone who goes through your shopping cart page, click on pcs, then when you go to the item page, they will now show ads of pcs. So far so good.

Another technique can be used to detect click fraud is the IP address. For example, when a user searches for “pcs”, they will automatically get redirected to your homepage. Thus, if you get redirected to any particular site, it might be because you have given the wrong IP address.

So, how do you know if a website belongs to its owner? Some common tricks can be used to determine whether a site is real or fake online. Check the following methods

Takeaway menus

Popup messages

Mobile view

Popup windows

Hidden buttons

You can find a list of them by logging into the host server and adding menu items or hidden buttons. The last one is used to hide the actual links on a web page.

Here is an example:

It works on browsers, but not mobile devices.

To spot click fraud, here are some tips that would help you spot it easily:

Watch carefully the colours of your Web Page – Make sure you don’t click on things that are red, blue, yellow, etc.

Don’t leave lots of spaces between paragraphs – Use short sentences when discussing your thoughts, details, opinions, feelings, etc.

Your Website must load quickly enough.

Your Content Must Be SEO Friendly.

Check the Site’s Security (SSL, HTTPS, etc.) and Privacy (HTTPS).

Don’t allow unnecessary advertising, especially intrusive ones. (Specially targeting Ads as shown in this guide)

Check for Hidden Banners on Websites. This can tell you that a website has an unwanted Adblocker or a pop-up widget.

There is a tool where you can verify if a website is legitimate by taking a look at the security of every aspect and doing some tests. Let me know in the comments section below, if I’m missing a few suggestions, please comment.

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