“Senators Urge FTC To Examine Ad Fraud”

The Wall Street Journal reports:

Democrats Mark Warner of Virginia and Chuck Schumer of New York plan to send a letter to the Federal Trade Commission [today] asking the regulatory body to examine the persistent challenge of fraudulent ads in online advertising.

For the past several years, as the buying and selling of digital advertising has grown more automated, the industry has grappled with various forms of fraud. For example, scam artists have built networks of bogus websites, where they sell ads and use computer programs– or “bots”– to make it look as though these sites are regularly visited by humans.

In other cases, fraudsters have used software to hijack people’s computers and direct web traffic to suspect sites loaded with ads.

The senators, both members of the Senate Banking Committee, noted that the ad industry has undertaken various efforts to stamp out fraud but questioned whether self-regulation will go far enough.

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