Identifying, tracking, and preventing bot traffic (non-human traffic) and low quality traffic is critical to online advertisers, security professionals, website administrators, and more. zvelo’s ad tech solutions and traffic monitoring services provide advanced insight into bot traffic—using machine learning and dozens of key identifiers to determine if page behavior is coming from humans or bots.

Content categorization Quality Assurance at zvelo

How does zvelo provide the most accurate content categorization service and the best URL database available? The approach is two-fold and while a substantial chunk of the workload is handled by zvelo’s line-up of machine learning and artificial intelligence-based categorization processes and systems, the quality assurance and other daily efforts put forth by its human Web Analysts can never be discounted.

Ad Fraud and the Bots Gaming Digital Advertising

Reports are plentiful of non-human bots gaming the online advertising industry by delivering fraudulent impressions and click traffic, and the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) took note. The IAB released the “Traffic Fraud: Best Practices for Reducing Risk to Exposure” on December 5, 2013, to help online media buyers, publishers and ad networks mitigate the dilemma.

Ad Blocking Drives Need for Contextual Targeting

Ad blocking has gained wide consumer acceptance over the past couple of years and a PageFair report suggests it could be costing web-based businesses hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost advertising revenue. In some instances, ad blocking negatively impacted a select number of websites so much they are no longer online. With the use of ad blocking software on the rise, there exists a significant requirement by the ad-tech market to make the most of those actual ad placements that make the cut. In other words, it’s more important than ever for ad units to be in-context with content on web pages, no matter how deep within a website the placements land.

Why Advertisers are Missing out on Impressions

The display advertising process has been pretty consistent over recent years. Advertisers like Coca-Cola, AT&T, and State Farm Group plan and buy available advertising space on publisher websites. The planning and buying is conducted by someone in-house or an outside advertising agency or independent marketer is brought in to facilitate. The use of an advertising platform usually follows and serves to disperse the actual ad units across various web properties for people to consume. People then have the choice to view and click-through on an ad depending on how enticing the offer or messaging is. What happens if an ad unit is not served and people don’t have the opportunity of reacting to it because it simply did not appear? That’s precisely what comScore revealed in their U.S. Digital Future in Focus 2013 report.

Spam Web Page Detection – a New Approach

Web spam is the bombardment of mostly unsolicited advertising messages or links sent across a wide array of media, including social networking websites, instant messaging applications, online newsgroups or forums, mobile phones, and blogs. Web spam has even been found stuffed within the results pages of popular search engines like Google. While the majority of web spam is benign, certain campaigns are tied to particular types of web pages disguised to contain valuable information. In actuality, these spam web pages are often littered with irrelevant and meaningless content, sometimes inappropriate in nature, or worse yet they can be used to host and spread malware.

The 2011 Facebook Spam Campaign

Online advertising spending in the U.S. is on the rise. In the first quarter of 2011 alone, companies that sold online advertising reportedly surpassed $7 billion in revenue.1 Unfortunately, social engineering scams on Facebook also continue to thrive.2 How are the two related? Unsolicited Facebook spam in the form of status updates is actively infiltrating the social networking giant and aimed at tricking users into visiting websites ridden with survey scams and pop-up advertising, as is the case in the following analysis of a real-world example. This trend will continue to degrade the credibility of the online advertising industry and could possibly taint the images of the brands that these spam campaigns are targeting.

Poisoned search results – Super Bowl

The Super Bowl is the one of the biggest and most watched television events of the year in the United States. People everywhere scour the internet looking for predictions, gambling spreads and news before the event and scores, stories and clips after the event.  In anticipation of the increased search traffic for Super Bowl related terms, cybercriminals have shown themselves to be well-organized and planning ahead.  Search results for Super Bowl related search terms are already turning up top-ten results linked to malicious websites.