Click Forensics has released a study showing that click fraud has hit 17.1%, an all-time high. For those of you who are unfamiliar, click fraud represents the act of clicking on a web advertisement to inflate click-through rates.
TechCrunch points out that over 30% of click fraud is via automated bots—another all-time high. This is a 14% increase over last quarter. I’m surprised the search engines aren’t doing a better job at keeping the bots down. This clearly continues to be a problem and needs to be addressed. I think the search engines need to release a state of the industry report on how they plan to cut these rates now ASAP.
Outside of the U.S., Canada is the largest driver of click fraud (7.1%), followed by Germany (3%) and China (2.3%).
TechCrunch also calls out that Click Forensics believes this may be a result of the economic state of the U.S., as old tricks like link farms are being used again. I think it is a direct result of a lack of focus, and perhaps effort, on the search engines’ side of things. What do you think?