Posted September 22, 2006 10:33 am by with 2 comments

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Business Week has an extensive look at click fraud – yep, can’t go a month, without someone doing an expose on click fraud.

The article is lengthy, but well done. In it, you’ll find details of a mortgage company losing $100,000; highlights of “domain parking” and the poor quality clicks they generate; and a look at PTR (paid to read) networks.

This snippet sets the tone…

A BusinessWeek investigation has revealed a thriving click-fraud underground populated by swarms of small-time players, making detection difficult. “Paid to read” rings with hundreds or thousands of members each, all of them pressing PC mice over and over in living rooms and dens around the world. In some cases, “clickbot” software generates page hits automatically and anonymously. Participants from Kentucky to China speak of making from $25 to several thousand dollars a month apiece, cash they wouldn’t receive if Google and Yahoo were as successful at blocking fraud as they claim.

  • One of the easiest ways to set up a sites with ads that your “paid to read” gang clicks on is to establish a nest of splogs and automatically populate them with plagiarized content from other blogs. Companies like Google and Yahoo can benefit from better automatic splog detection. It might be possible to test this hypothesis by analyzing the frequency of splogs as a source of clicks for an advertiser. If anyone whould like to share their data we might be able to do such an analysis. Contact us if you are interested.

  • Seeing as I let you link back to your site, can I get one of those juicy “.edu” links to 😉