Combat Digital Ad Fraud with Validated Data and Targeting Techniques

January 30, 2024 |
Helen Bartkiewicz

Digital advertising is ever-expanding, on both a domestic and a global scale. Ad spend continues to increase year-over-year, and forecasts predict further growth with seemingly no end in sight. 2023’s ad spend exceeded $600 billion worldwide, and is expected to reach $870 billion by 2027 with a steady annual growth rate between 8% and 11%.

With all of the money being poured into digital ad campaigns, the looming question is: How much of this ad spend is actually effective? If ad creatives aren’t reaching their respective intended audiences, the spend can be considered wasted. Impressions, clicks, and other figures can be inaccurate, either being intentionally falsified, inflated, or being served to online bots.

According to the Video Advertising Bureau (VAB), in 2023 approximately $35 billion in ad spend was lost to fraud, in North America alone. Globally, that figure reached over $84 billion. As the number of online bots continues to increase year over year, over 40% of all online traffic has now become invalid. So how can advertisers ensure that they are actually reaching their intended audience for each campaign, simultaneously avoiding bots and potential legal ramifications? 

The key to avoiding bots is partnering with a trusted ad tech vendor who connects validated offline data to online identifiers rather than relying on cookies, since the vast majority of bot fraud can be tied to cookie usage. While some vendors purposefully manipulate campaign metrics by overcounting users, spoofing domains, stuffing cookies, ad stacking, or otherwise falsifying data, those who use validated business and consumer data from offline sources such as SEC filings, building permits, and census data provide accurate, reliable campaign reports and insights that reflect how the intended audience was targeted and the results of the targeting.

AdDaptive’s up-to-date offline data mapped to digital identifiers is a solution much less susceptible to fraud than cookie pools. Our technology is incredibly accurate in terms of attribution when compared to third-party cookies, which offer an audience match rate somewhere between 40% and 60%. The data pool and targeting techniques that AdDaptive uses, on the other hand, are over 97% verified at the source so you can be sure real people are seeing your ads, not bots. 

“Mitigating the risk of ad fraud begins with the partnerships you make.” – VAB 


Combat invalid ad traffic and avoid the ever-increasing amount of online bots with the help of AdDaptive’s verified, transparent solutions and technology. 

Read more in our brand safety guide

Ready to speak with a digital advertising expert? Book a meeting below.