People & Startups

Mobile Ads fraud in India

Mobile Ad Fraud in India
Pic Courtesy: Tune


The Startup Mojo is a community which unveils the learning of the startup world to empower the budding entrepreneurs. We sincerely intend to build a network for entrepreneurs, thereby helping them to cross leverage their skills and resources to overcome their early challenges.

India is the fastest growing Mobile Ad Market in the world and seems to grow into manifolds with the advent of 4G penetration in India. In addition to new 4G players in India who will switch from a feature phone to an LTE band enabled Smartphone there will be active user base of Internet enabled Smartphones which will have higher data usage and will be engaged more with Smartphones than earlier.

To understand the growing potential, lets understand the maths’s first

Total Subscriber Base 1018 Mn
Effective User Base (Smartphones with Internet) 400 Mn
Reliance 4G contribution to Effective User Base 350 Mn
Total Effective User Base 750 Mn
*Source: TRAI


Every marketer in India is eyeing the next set of 350 million Smartphone users in the Country. India with the launch of Jio has been able to envisage its vision of empowering people through Smartphone usage. The impact is going to bring another 350 million feature phone users to transform into Smartphone users due to cheap data and free phone calls through VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) over 4G bandwidth.

Read Now : The Mega Startup Jio crosses 100 Millon Mark.

With the addition of 350 Mn users in India and Internet penetration led by Mobile Internet penetration (4G) , it makes India to be the largest and the fastest growing Mobile Ad Market in the World.

As per the official Statement of the research agency TUNE “India is one of the most active countries on the planet for mobile app installs, and our sample size for the country was massive: more than 100 million installs. Unfortunately, 16.2% of them show unmistakable signs of fraud.”

Mobile Ad Fraud 6

Mobile Ad Fraud 6


Is Indian Law Makers ready to regulate the Indian Mobile Advertising Market?

While India seem to be engrossed in growth, there is extremely feeble attention given to regulate the norms to control mobile ad fraud in India. The Indian law makers are finding it difficult to cope with the dynamism of the technology world. They have been continuously hit by a timeframe which is usually less and doesn’t deem fit into their style of working. Some of the recent hickups have revealed status of the Indian Government inability and preparation to manoeuvre Technology industry. For instance Cryptocurrency in India as per the RBI gazette was considered illegal way of transaction but with the growing market size RBI had to include it into its action items and will come with guidelines which will regulate the cryptocurrency market soon.

Mobile Fraud in India 2

Mobile Fraud in India 2

On the other hand, the Government has outsourced some of its leading online activities to private players and threats pertaining to data through its secured servers have been surfaced in the past. Recently one of the Sr. Official of Ola as well as founder has been taken into custody against the data theft from the UIDAI information server through malign practise of their Information APIs (Application Programming Interface).


Why the ad networks or online platforms doing Mobile Ad Fraud?

India is an exploding market and a land of rising Entrepreneurs. That means that the Entrepreneurs need to move fast to capture new market share which eventually translates to new smartphone users in the country because if they don’t, they shall not be able to get another set of funds to sustain or grow which means an empasse to the company’s future!

On the other hand the VC’s have formed the corpuses of billion of dollars on the promise of high ROI which is only possible if Startups continue to grow their revenue channels quickly to ensure either a bigger VC looking to invest or a possible merger leading to high exits for the investor.

The Indian Digital Ad revenue is soaring at a YoY pace of 28%, which seems to be taking away a major pie of other ad mediums such as Electronic and Print Media. The advertisers are looking to bring in targeted marketing and effective ways and desired format to publish their ads which is possible only over an interactive screen of web or mobile.


 Mobile Ad Fraud 4

With the need of the hour and soaring expectation of the Startup’s Venture Capitalists there seems to be a rat race to top the charts of revenue and appear as the most fancy destination for VC’s to land, thus creating an urge of doing frauds to attract Brands and pump up revenue leading to further investments and bigger ROI.

The Three Types of  Mobile Ad Frauds

The Click Fraud – When an ad banner is displayed on the façade of the mobile site, it is subjected to pre-agreed clicks. The ad is served with clicks which are through artificial bots and the numbers keep increasing till it reaches to its target, it is also called as click stuffing or click spamming,. Even if there is a link of the ad to a third party site as the bots are unique and exists as a “fake consumer” on the platform hence even if the brand gets into demographics at the time of campaign report, it is manipulated to the tee.

The Install Fraud – Well just like we have artificial bots for click fraud there are thousands of mobile devices operated by specially designed software or people who repeatedly install apps to claim installs for brands or advertising credit. This is to ensure that Google Play is able to see users downloading the app from their respective IDs.

The Compliance Fraud: This is one of the most common frauds that has been prevailing in the system which means that the ads are missed or is not shown to the consumer.

Mobile Ad Fraud 5

Mobile Ad Fraud 5


According to the Tune Report, 2017 “Tune has studied 24.3 billion clicks on 702 ad networks, plus 437 million mobile app installs in 131countries. Globally, click fraud across all those ad networks is 15.17%. Eight ad networks are100% fraud, and 35 ad networks are 50% or greater. In terms of mobile app installs, 10% are clearly fraudulent.

“I’ve been involved in the ad tech industry for over 6 years now. Specifically to my experience at Mobikwik, I sensed a huge amount of fraud when I initiated queries around click to install times and LTV of users coming in from specific network. “The three key fraud types that we encountered were click stuffing, fake attribution, and mixing incentivized and non-­‐incentivized traffic.” Daman Soni, head of growth and marketing at Mobikwik

Click to comment

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

8 + 16 =

Most Popular

To Top