16 January 2010

Is Clickfraud Getting Smarter

I have often thought that click fraud is one of the rather insidious sides of the web. Over time people have come to accept it rather than address it in a comprehensive manner. Why? Because the biggest player(s) actually benefit from it.

So let's look at the latest version that is going the rounds. The hidden spam bot.

For a detailed view of this rather nasty behavior go and read Professor Ben Edelman's blog. It is a very detailed explanation of the issue. I cannot independently verify it because I am not an expert in this area but it seems credible to me.

At this point I think the more people that know about this stuff the better.

Clearly Google needs to step up its game and work harder. It also needs to be a lot more transparent to the whole community about its efforts. I recognize that this may not be what everybody wants but in the end the web is about transparency.

Couple of points. If you want to know a company who (it is alleged) are some of the perpetrators of this particular type of bad behavior then according to Ben's blog it is a company called Trafficsolar.

There are two side bits to this. McAfee and several other spyware/malware companies have given Trafficsolar a good bill of health. Ben Edelman has previously been associated with Microsoft.

All that aside I think it is very important that websters should have an appreciation of the nature of this new form of clickfraud.


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