Mobile in-app ad fraud soars to $1.4 billion in Q1 2024

In the first quarter of 2024, the global mobile app IVT rate in the open programmatic in-app ad marketplace reached 23%, according to Pixalate’s Q1 2024 Global Mobile Invalid Traffic Benchmark Report. This high rate of invalid traffic translated to an estimated $1.4 billion in advertising spend lost to ad fraud and IVT. The data reveals a year-over-year increase of 15% in mobile app IVT, indicating a growing challenge for advertisers.

Pixalate’s data science team examined 5.1 million active mobile apps and processed over 50 billion global open programmatic advertising impressions in the first quarter of 2024. The report provides detailed benchmarks for IVT and ad fraud across various global regions, including North America, EMEA, APAC, and LATAM. It also offers insights based on country-specific data, the presence of app-ads.txt files, and other critical breakdowns.

The report highlights a significant disparity in IVT risk between apps with and without app-ads.txt files. Mobile apps lacking these files experienced a 73% higher IVT risk compared to those with the files, underscoring the importance of adopting app-ads.txt to mitigate fraud.

The APAC region reported the highest mobile in-app IVT rate at 30% in Q1 2024. Within this region, South Korea emerged as the country with the highest IVT rate in the open programmatic mobile in-app ad marketplace, at a striking 36%. This positions South Korea as a critical area of concern for ad fraud in mobile advertising.

The analysis also revealed that apps from the Google Play Store faced an 18% higher IVT risk compared to those from the Apple App Store. This difference suggests varying levels of vulnerability and emphasizes the need for platform-specific strategies to combat ad fraud.

Written by Maya Robertson


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