The Drum: The Trade Desk and White Ops ink deal to block fraudulent traffic before it is bought

With some of the internet’s largest media owners issuing refunds for fraudulent traffic, The Trade Desk and White Ops have entered a pact that will see the pair identify fraudulent traffic before it is purchased.

Ad fraud is a problem that will cost advertisers over $16bn this year, according to reports, with the pair claiming this “landmark” agreement is differentiated from previous efforts to tackle online ad fraud. This is because both parties aim to ensure there is a human being on the other end of every ad impression served by the demand-side platform (DSP).

This will involve the pair co-locating data centers in North America, Europe and Asia, which will then scan every biddable ad impression in real-time – a tactic that is commonly used by high frequency traders in the financial markets. This means that when fraudulent traffic, or “sophisticated invalid traffic” (SIVT), is identified by White Ops The Trade Desk will be notified, and then it will block the impression, with the pair aiming to use this method for every ad impression it serves.

Existing pre- and post-bid anti-fraud measures have not been applied in adequate measure to truly tackle the problem, with the pair claiming that it has historically been common practice for such measures to be used in an ad hoc manner. As a result those players profiting from SIVT have been able to stay ahead of the game, according to both parties.

“To date, the industry standard response has been to request credits from publishers and SSPs [supply-side platforms], or to create complex thresholds of acceptable fraud, rather than preventing the problem at the start,” reads a post from the pairing.

Also commenting on the agreement, Megan Pagliuca, Accuen global CEO, added: “This is a truly unique approach to fraud prevention that will make a significant impact for our brands. Unlike other solutions, the goal here is to run all impressions across The Trade Desk’s platform through White Ops, not just sampled impressions. Additionally, the Trade Desk has collaborated with the leading SSPs to bring a unified solution to market.”

Will Doherty, Index Exchange, VP of business development, added: “The Trade Desk and White Ops are two of Index’s important partners, and we believe this initiative will provide more transparency in programmatic buying.”

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