All posts by bots42

AdTech Disruption

Wall St Tombstone

AdTech is undergoing massive changes lately.  One of the biggest casualties of this disruption are digital publishers.  We recently saw Yahoo sell for $4.6B to Verizon ($VZ) which in 2008 was offered $44B from Microsoft ($MSFT).  Disruption can also create winners.  It creates opportunities for value seen only by visionaries.  AdTech is still advancing with changes in this early market structure.

  • Market efficiencies are still needed in this defragmented market.
  • Fraud continues to be a major part of the ecosystem.
  • Inefficient players will be wiped out.
  • Ad blockers are a sign of a broken system.
  • Lack of transparency is a problem.
  • Decreasing CPM.

Innovation and creating value in the ecosystem is a must for survival.  The players that continue to lack value will be purged from the ecosystem.  This can be seen very clearly with the Yahoo sale.  This market is ready for massive disruption.  It happened on Wall St and it will happen in AdTech.  Message me if you want to learn more.

Juiced Up Clicks

I hope everyone enjoyed the long 4th of July weekend!!  While you were watching fireworks, bot fraud was also exploding. Check out the Chinese ad agency Yingmob and their new mobile botnet “HummingBad” similar to “BreakingBad” raking in $300k in revenue per month by clicking ads.  I wonder what Heisenberg would think of this?  As mentioned last month, in “Who’s Your Daddy”, you better know your fraud bots and who they are coming from.

Also, I wanted to invite you to a new Ad group I organize.  If you want to meet other Ad Professionals and throw back some cocktails like Mad Men/Women please join LA Ad Pros here.

Who’s Your Daddy

botsgonewildarmy200

A long time ago on a distant network before clouds with Sun servers and Cisco routers, there arose a search engine war.  Players such as Altavista, Excite, Lycos, Yahoo, and Google fought for dominance.  As the battle waged on, the internet bubble kept expanding like it’s own galaxy.  At the apex, social networks were born as well as cyber security user threats.

The first of this new species would be named Friendster.  A few years later, MySpace was spawned and would quickly dwarf it’s predecessor with an astonishing 360 million users.  Like all battles, champions fall.  What was once the mighty empire of Friendster, would soon become ancient ruins.  Excavators recently stumbled upon these ruins of Friendster.  We also see tomb raiders known as hackers selling the hieroglyphic writings of the MySpace walls (username/passwords) for 10 Bitcoins (BTC).  What’s next?  Will GeoCities or Netzero be offered in some online version of the Antiques Roadshow?

How much will your data fetch?  When the man who created the most powerful social network empire is unable keep his own accounts safe, how long until your data is up for sale?  This was a small automated program logging into Zuckerberg’s account, basic Hacker 101 from the LinkedIn hack.  This shows no matter how big you think you are, you’re always vulnerable to bot attacks.  Get with the program and establish better user authentication.

With all these automated bot attacks and ad click blockers, we are seeing how to make money with bots in the Ad Tech world.  Major advertisers are getting hacked out of double digit billions per year.  A new report from The Dhar Method came out called “Mystery Shopping Inside the Ad Fraud Verification Bubble” and audio version here.  An inside look at creating a fake publisher with cheap ad flow to make revenue from digital ads.  For the secret test, a few of the major ad fraud detection technologies and a few unheard of up and coming ad fraud detection companies were used.  All but one failed!  Who’s your Daddy?

This Father’s Day keep custody of your data in a bot battle.  Keep your accounts safe and secure with BioChronometrics.

The Turning Point in Advertising

The Rubicon will be crossed in the advertising market with television and digital sometime in 2017.  The special thing about this crossing is the advent of ad blockers and ad fraud as noted in the Economist titled Invisible Ads, Phantom Reader.

There are four parties involved here which are infected:

  • Consumers which are overwhelmed with ads so they put ad blockers on.
  • Advertisers trying to sell their products.
  • Publishers that make money from ads for their free content.
  • Exchanges that turn their shoulders on ad fraud.

The ecosystem is so polluted with ad fraud that the 4 parties are striving to create a balance of what works best for each party except all strategies have failed.  One thing is clear, ad fraud needs to be eliminated.  Contact me today if you have bots attacking your ads.  We can fix those bots with Secure Ad.

Cyber Security Predictions for 2016

Yoda Predictions 2016 Cyber Security

Beware, spoilers for 2016.

  1. Anonymous Twitter account will get hacked and goes underground.
  2. Digital ad market will finally eliminate ad fraud saving advertisers $200 billion per year in fraud.  This saved money will be given back to consumers with issued checks, coupons,  and less ads.
  3. The “Ultimate Password” will go mainstream with the start of the “Ultimate Email”.
  4. CAPTCHA’s and reCAPTCHA’s will become  extinct.  Passive authentication NoMoreCaptchas will replace it.
  5. NoMoreCaptchas will break the world record for the Turing Test a second time.
  6. Homeland security ads (literally) LinkedIn, Instagram, SnapChat, Tinder, and Grindr for background checks and digital advertising.
  7. Another Bitcoin exchange goes poof.  Bitcoin goes to $10,000 again.
  8. Pirate Bay floats away into the sunset never to be seen.
  9. Man in middle gets caught in the middle via eDNA.
  10. The IRS gets hacked by AnonyTax.  They will permanently reduce taxes for all Americans.

Have a good New Years everyone!!!

The Bot that Stole Christmas

Dr Evil Dont be evil evil Bots Gone Wile

So far, this winter has been a wonderland of bot scams! Bot elves are mining at warp speed to steal your holiday cookies. Don’t let these sneaky thieves steal your Christmas cheers or profits!

These latest holiday hijinks are spoofing everyone from Wall Street to Main Street. The Xindi botnet will generate $3 billion from advertisers by the end of December.  Xindi’s pockets will be jingling with all those impression pennies. There are roughly 6-8 million corporate computers infected with this Grinch. The fix? A list of IP addresses to not advertise on.  That is not a solution.

If CAPTCHA was a headache, iCAPTCHA is a migrane. Instead of the world typing 200M CAPTCHA’s a day, iCAPTCHA requires the user to authenticate twice, using an illegible word and choosing 1 of 2 “language learning” answers. Avoid the headache altogether with NoMoreCaptchas.

If Chipotle didn’t have enough issues with e-coli, check out the Chipotle human resources in-denial of security article.  HR at Chipotle was using an email domain as a response called chipotle@chipotlehr.com a domain owned by IT guy Michael Kohlman. Realizing what a threat this was, Kohlman offered to donate the domain to Chipotle. Sadly they were as interested in protecting sensitive personal data as they are the quality of their food. They rejected his offer stating they didn’t see it as a threat.

A round of holiday cheers to Rohit Dua from LinkedIn India for fixing a cross site script (XSS) vulnerability within the LinkedIn help forums!

Beware if you are looking to make merry with a Tinderoni, the Tinder of China called TanTan recently reported a “man in the middle” gathering private user information such as password, location, preferences, and personal data.

If you don’t want to be loaded down with coal in your holiday stocking, or find out a bot Grinch has stolen your Christmas cookies, protect yourself with NoMoreCaptchas or Secure Ad using BioChronometrics.

Wishing you all a safe and bot-free holiday season 🙂

 

eCommerce Fraud Gone Wild

credit card fraud unlimited shopping

This past Sunday, I decided to take a relaxing stroll.  The air was crisp, the birds were chirping, families were decorating their houses for Halloween.  But the scariest sight to behold was inside my local Trader Joe’s!  Lines to check out ran the length of the store, people were angry, kids were screaming, Moms were stressing, ice cream was melting.  I’d never seen such chaos. I figured it must be the end of the world and nobody told me.  People must be stocking up on everything right?  Beer, vodka, tequila, you know – the essentials for the end of the world 🙂  So I grabbed my groceries and waited, and waited and waited … in a line that would not budge.  I asked the checker, why the long wait?  He said, “We got the New Chip and it takes forever to process.”  Instead of a swipe, the new cards “EMV” which stands for EuroPay, MasterCard, and Visa takes a push-and-wait 35 to 40 seconds for verification.  Is this push-and-wait the doom of plastic and the cataclysmic shift to mobile wallet payments?

At the point of sale (POS) machine, I noticed the “Android Pay” logo.  I had used the Google Wallet a few months earlier at Rite Aid, but it was limited on the stores that accepted it.  Google also re-branded the Google Wallet to Android Pay to make it sound like Apple Pay.  Today was my lucky day, I had an opportunity to try out Android Pay 😀  I pulled up the app and selected my electronic credit card of choice and gently put my phone against the POS machine.  In 2-3 seconds the cashier was looking at me in amazement and couldn’t believe how fast I paid. As he handed me my receipt, I thought “Wow, plastic is history!”

Flashback a few weeks ago prior when I was purchasing tickets on EventBrite they added Android Pay to the payment options.  I usually chose PayPal because it’s much faster than wasting my time on the web checkout entering CVV codes and my credit card info.  So I decided to give Android Pay a try.  With a few clicks, I was done.  Wow, “fast and completely painless!”

Because of the speed and security of electronic wallets, consumers will adopt electronic wallets very quickly in the next few years. The in person retail fraud will drop and most fraud will be in cyber space with eCommerce sites that use “card not present”.   With the introduction of eDNA, eCommerce sites can reduce their fraud by authenticating the user on the site or mobile device for a purchase. eDNA is a new technology that is derived from BioChronometrics which is passive user authentication based on a users behavior such as type, text, click, or swipe.  Message me if you need help with the flood of eCommerce fraud.  It’s not the end of the world, just the end of plastic!

WordPress Bot Prevention

sxx_aksimet_nomorecaptchas LNKD

Recently a WordPress exploit was discovered for the very popular Akismet spam comment blocking plugin.  Akismet uses a white/black list type of technology to determine bad comments.  The cross site script (XSS) vulnerability was used in the comment section of a WP site by using a malicious script designed for converting emoticons to graphical icons.  Is there a way to prevent this?

WordPress sites are very common and most are used by small bloggers and businesses to have a very professional looking presence on the web.  This site uses WordPress.   A thing most people forget is that WordPress is open source and one of the most widely used content management system (CMS) on the internet.  The internet is HUGE.  What this means is WordPress is highly targeted by various types of hacker exploits.

These exploits are usually conducted by automated bots that go to WordPress sites.  Because of the bots, it’s very important to have anti bot technology on your site.  If you want to test out some anti bot technology check out NoMoreCaptchas with a FREE 6 month commercial trial.  Code NOBOTS15

Thank You Very Much!!