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Advertising fraud in iGaming and how to fight it

27th August 2021 10:10 am GMT

ADEX explains how iGaming companies can protect its campaigns smartly and find a way to shield themselves from the ad fraud upcoming threats

Talking about the iGaming market, the first thing worth paying attention to is its impressive growth. The capitalization of the worldwide gambling market amounted to $651 billion in 2021.

Considering such impressive sums, payment providers deploy enormous resources to develop better technologies and therefore - minimize the risk of fraudulent transactions. Unfortunately, virtual gambling is extremely vulnerable to fraud, as there are many different ways to manipulate transactions here.

As the online gambling consumer base has grown exponentially throughout the pandemic, the threat of fraud, especially ad fraud, has also increased.

The most common fraud schemes

Assume that an advertiser pays for registrations with verified phone numbers or emails. To commit fraud, an affiliate specialist registers and asks for acquaintances to do the same. Or simply drives bot traffic. This affiliate will get paid for such actions, but the advertiser won’t get anything. The problem is that bots and fake registrants never make any deposits. As such, the advertiser's budget goes down the drain. 

Since the most common threat comes from bots when it comes to illegal mobile traffic, a problem that is not easy to solve as bots are becoming more sophisticated and rapidly evolving due to the pandemic to circumvent anti-fraud strategies.

By delving deeper into mobile fraud, Android platforms suffer 40% of all game traffic that is invalid and potentially fraudulent.

More than 34 per cent of gaming and betting traffic is from invalid sources, which is heightened compared to the ecommerce sector, which reports 24 per cent invalid traffic. 

Furthermore, as the gaming and betting industry shifts increasingly to mobile, the research detailed that mobile traffic fraud spiked at 36 per cent, compared to 28 per cent of its desktop counterpart. 

This evolution has been replicated in many sectors as fraudsters become more careful about their actions during the pandemic and the overall acceleration of digital interaction.

Every day it becomes more and more difficult to distinguish real users from fake players. Scammers use automation to find new victims and use stolen data of real people. For example, a few years ago, Yahoo! reported two major data breaches - over 1.5 billion users' email addresses, birthdays, passwords and phone numbers leaked. Nobody knows to what purpose this data was used later. 

Moreover, iGaming draws close attention not only from fraudsters. Oftentimes, gambling companies fall prey to unfair competition. Competitors are using click fraud as means to deplete your marketing budget and eliminate your ads from the results pages.

While not all companies go to these extremes to get rid of competition, the situation with gambling fraud is tense enough: companies are suffering from low ROI and poor campaign performance. Why? Because the number of unscrupulous webmasters looking to artificially inflate traffic volumes keeps increasing. And gambling companies for whom big traffic volumes are essential are the ones to bear the cost. 

Ignoring this problem can be costly for companies that don’t know how to recognize fraud and, more importantly, how to prevent it.

Statistics, Risks and Forecast

Analyzing numerous campaigns of four large gambling companies with numerous GEOs around the globe, they stumbled upon various fraud schemes and defined which prevail around the market. 

A recent report from Adex, which aims to create alternative methods of rooting out ad fraud, took a closer look at the ad campaigns of four key players in the sector over a five-month period as they were actively engaging with new traffic sources at the time.

Based on the statistics and experience, ADEX reveals some possible directions and methods fraudsters might take in the near future. Also the company has figured out which regions are prone to fraud more than others and eagerly present the results of these findings in stats.

In case gambling is a sphere of your interest, this manual will come in handy. Whether you want to enter the gambling niche or already work there for a while, make sure to check our report out.


ADEX, an expert in fraud-free advertising, suggests a number of approaches to detect, fight, and prevent fraudulent traffic pervasive in the gambling industry.  The company shows a real-time quality report identifying invalid traffic, fraud, and bots that drain online advertising budget. Secure your investments in online advertising and get bullet-proof leverage for refund cases.

Increase the chance to protect your current campaigns smartly and find a way to shield yourself from the upcoming threats. Get a free report and don’t give bots a chance.

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