By Jonathan Easton
A new video streaming fraud scheme that attempts to steal over US$8 million each month in ad spend has been exposed.
The scheme, dubbed ‘ViperBot’, was discovered by software platform DoubleVerify. It works by stripping the code that verifies ad impressions and then concealing and redirecting this code through real devices to hide the fraudulent activity.
The company said that ViperBot is spoofing more than five million devices and up to 85 million ad requests per day.
CEO at DoubleVerify, Mark Zagorski said: “ViperBot is one of the most sophisticated fraud schemes that DV has ever identified. The dynamic nature of fraud schemes underscores the fact that advertisers need a partner who is laser focused on protecting their interests – and who operates independent of the media transaction to remain neutral when determining the quality of inventory.
“Efficient and transparent media buying leads to better outcomes for brands. By uncovering ViperBot, we are able to give brands greater confidence in their digital investment while ensuring campaign performance.”
Chief product officer, DoubleVerify, Jack Smith said: “As fraudsters continue to evolve and aggressively target high-value inventory types, measurement providers need to catch up. We’re seeing this happen in CTV and mobile inventory, where higher CPMs make it a more attractive target, but this new redirection tactic can be applied across many environments.”
DoubleVerify said that it detected and mitigated the scheme for its customers thanks to its Fraud Lab team of scientists, mathematicians and analysts.