Tag: mobile fraud

Mobile security issues are costing marketers $1 billion in ad fraud

Malicious mobile apps are becoming an increasingly problematic expense for advertisers.

Forensiq, a fraud detection firm, has now announced the results of its recent research, which indicated that mobile security issues produced by malicious apps are generating an additional cost to advertisers that is close to $1 billion every year.

In-app advertising has become a tremendous business, worth an estimated $20 billion in the United States.

This rate is continuing to grow along with the popularity of smartphones. However, of that amount that is being spent on mobile marketing, it is being estimated that about a twentieth of it is actually being wasted. Mobile security issues in the form of fraudulent and malicious apps that can hijack smartphones and convert them into ad-viewing botnets could be costing as much as $1 billion of that $20 billion in advertising money.

There are now many different known forms of these mobile security issues that plague device users and advertisers.

Mobile Security Costing Billions in FraudWhile there are a broad spectrum of different types of mobile fraud, which includes gadget emulation, location spoofing, and mobile user-agent spoofing, in addition to user acquisition scams, Forensiq says that it doesn’t stop there. It claims to have identified a new type of fraud, which it calls “mobile device hijacking.”

What that involves is the use of a malicious app that pretends to act as a human on a device by loading new pages or using various different application functions, each of which cause the device to load advertising. That said, while this may somewhat replicate human behavior, it also loads a much larger number of ads than would be the case with normal usage – up to 20 ads each minute. Often, this occurs in the background while the application in question isn’t being used, so that the owner of the device won’t even see that it is happening.

This mobile security problem is leading to an estimated $1 billion in lost dollars for marketers, but it also causes the device to eat through a user’s battery life and bandwidth. This means that it’s not just advertisers who are paying for this fraud, but the device owners, themselves, will also often face increased costs.

Mobile payments fraud may be a risk for merchants

Report highlights the lacking awareness merchants have concerning mobile payments fraud

Mobile payments fraud may be growing quite problematic for merchants. A recent study from Kount, the Fraud Practice, and CardNotPresent.com shows that merchants may be unaware of the mobile fraud that could be targeting them. Fraud is not uncommon in the retail space, especially when it comes to digital shopping. Many retailers have had to deal with fraudulent payments in the past and have become somewhat proficient at doing so, but mobile represents a new channel that retailers are not yet comfortable with.

Many retailers are not certain if they are tracking fraud

The report shows that 39.4% of merchants said that they were actively tracking fraud across all of their channels. Another 34.2% claimed that they were uncertain if they were tracking fraud across channels, however, which may be cause for concern among those involved in the mobile payments space. The report also shows that the majority of merchants (61%) are uncertain about whether or not fraud is increasing in the mobile channel. This uncertainty could affect their ability to combat fraud both in the present and in the future.

Mobile payments may not be riskier than other channels

Mobile Payments - FraudMobile payments have become quite popular among consumers, but they have also become a target for malicious groups that want to exploit financial information. Approximately 34% of merchants that deal in digital goods believe that the mobile channel is somewhat riskier when compared to conventional channels. The majority of merchants, however, believe that mobile is as risky as any other channel, since all channels have had to deal with fraudulent transactions in the past.

More merchants are beginning to take mobile payments seriously

The number of merchants that are actively supporting mobile payments continues to grow. The report notes that 68% of all merchants now have some form of mobile payments plan in place. Another 20% of merchants are currently planning to put a mobile payments system in place at some point this year. Merchants are showing favor for mobile channels because of their convenience and believe that mobile devices are an effective way to engage consumers.