Google boosted its anti-fraud detection team by acquiring anti-malware company spider.io. The announcement was posted on the DoubleClick Advertiser Blog this morning.
Google said the acquisition of London-based spider.io’s seven-member team would add transparency for advertisers.
“This vibrant ecosystem only flourishes if marketers can buy media online with the confidence that their ads are reaching real people, that results they see are based on actual interest,” Google’s vp of display advertising Neal Mohan wrote in today’s blog post. “To grow the pie for everyone, we need to take head on the issue of online fraud.”
The question of fraud and bot-generated clicks has vexed the online ad industry since its inception. Fraudulent activity can artificially inflate the data on ads and their reach across the Web.
Spider.io already has been at the forefront of weeding out bad actors. Last year, researchers there uncovered a botnet dubbed Chameleon that had corrupted 120,000 computers creating fake clicks and mouse activity that cost advertisers millions.
Google said that it would use spider.io’s technology to guard against fraudulent video and display ad activity.
“Over the long term, our goal is to improve the metrics that advertisers and publishers use to determine the value of digital media and give all parties a clearer, cleaner picture of what campaigns and media are truly delivering strong results,” Mohan wrote.
The terms of the deal were not disclosed.