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Google AdSense Forum

Clicked own ad.

 1:47 am on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hey Adsensers,

I wanted to ask this question regarding Google Adsense:

I had recently formatted my HD on my laptop/reinstalled WinXP and was on my first website since the formatting. I had gone to ONE of MY websites just to check to make sure my adsense ads were up and running OK. I was trying to right click my adsense ad on one of my sites BUT inadvertantly LEFT clicked this and POOF....it went onto the advertiser's page. OOPS! Mistake..Now after I did this, I checked my cookies and there was only the ADVERTISER's cookie there and no Google adsense cookie. I was under the impressions that when the adsense ad was clicked, a GOOGLE cookie was placed on the computer who clicked it as to report possible fraudulent clicking of your own ads.

Can anyone shed light on this?



 2:18 am on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

The adsense cookie you are talking of is only session-based and expires after you close your browser window i believe, if you have a dynamic IP just disconnect and open a new browser window if you intend to log into your adsense account.. i'm not writing this to help anyone cheat, but i don't think you need to e-mail the adsense team for one lousy click as a mistake either. it's hardly life or death this..


 2:20 am on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

A Google ad doesn't leave a cookie behind, but logging on to the admin system to check your stats does.

As it is the google adsense admin system and the google ad placement system are on 2 seperate domains so the cookies would not be able to be accessable from one domain to the other.


 2:34 am on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

OH I thought for some reason or another, that Google weeded out fraudulent(inadvertant accidental in my case) clickers but placing cookies on your system.

I guess it is prolly just IP address based...



 3:07 am on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

An IP based system is the only way they can detect fradulant clicks without people being able to bypass checks. Now of course, if you click on an ad from a PC with the same IP address as a machine you've logged onto the admin system with - that may be a different matter.

Once thing that bugs me - how do AOL users get checked as they run on a proxy system? With a million users all clicking from the "same" ip I guess it would be hard to check.

All I can guess is they look for unusual click out rates from IPs from the same company / IP range.


 8:54 am on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)


Just as a word of advice, use the "ads by google" link instead of right clicking if you have the need to check out the specs of an ad. It is a much safer method!


 2:49 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

Am I the only one that finds this question highly suspicious? Reads more like someone making an attempt to get advice on how to cheat adsense and experimenting with same.


 2:56 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

No, you're not the only one!


 4:01 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

It does seem like it was a carefully crafted scenario.

No question Google employ plenty of smart people, but I think it's best not to comment on the specific techniques they might employ to identify cheaters. Regardless of whether or not the original poster's question is legit, the world is full of lowlifes who would would love to find a better way to rip off the system.

If they drag AdSense traffic down to the level of some of the other programs, we'll ALL lose bigtime. The last PPC I affiliated with, I stuck with until the payouts dropped all the way to one cent.


 4:31 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

easiest thing to do is what a lot of people by joing click circles. 5-25 people get together to click on each others once/twice a day to make sure they really are working [webmasterworld.com].


 4:35 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

You guys are hilarious. I ask one simple question and I am flagged as 'suspicious'.

I am BACK to respond to you guys who are PARANOID and so quickly to suggest that I might be 'crafting a senario'. Do you really think I would post info my craftiness?

Believe me, I am not. I just had ONE simple question.

Thanks to those who did some clarifying as to my actual question.......

Don't you think we have the right to know what is happening on websites that are owned by us? because that is what I was truly asking....


 5:05 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

Don't you think we have the right to know what is happening on websites that are owned by us? because that is what I was truly asking....

Sure, you have a right to know what's happening on your Web site. You don't have a right to know what's happening within the "Ads by Google" box (which is owned by Google, not by the publisher).


 5:21 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

Of course, hence the only decision we have to whether or not to put them on our sites....

Google Adsense has only been good to my family of site(s)

Thanks G


 6:06 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

No offense intended. Clearly a potential fraudster would be unlikely to list his site in his profile and actually use it as his screen name. Nonetheless I don't think there is anything to be gained by discussing the specifics of how Google identifies self-clicks and bogus clicks.


 6:21 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

easiest thing to do is what a lot of people by joing click circles. 5-25 people get together to click on each others once/twice a day to make sure they really are working.

What do you mean by that? That link doesn't refer to any click circle. Where is your proof?


 7:50 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

You are right Jomaxx. Glad someone figured this out ;-)



 8:40 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

Brett has posted quite often about clicking on your own ads. He obviously feels strongly that nobody should dictate to you what you do on your own site. Assuming you are clever enough to not get caught by Google there are two issues. The first is the moral one - you are costing an advertiser money and effectively cheating him of a few cents. If you do that often enough you've made several hundreds or thousands of dollars in fraud (because that's what it is). The second issue is that it is not in everybody's long term interest that such "circles" - or fraudulent clicks in general - are encouraged. If such fraud gets widespread enough it will ruin the program for everyone. Adsense makes a lot of us a lot of money. Google does what is says it will do (except mail the cheque a few days late sometimes). The decent thing to do is keep your end of the bargain. And who said that "circles" can't be detected?

Tonysdesigns, I do believe that you are genuinely concerned about inadvertently clicking an ad. You could sit back and hope it's not noticed but on occasion people have contacted Google with their IP number and a brief email to say that it wasn't intentional. In no such case have I heard of Google terminating their account.

Welcome to WW. We are not usually a paranoid crowd ;-)


 9:04 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

Just for the record, I would never be nor am not part of clicking groups.

Thank you MACRO! You are correct. My concern was and is truly genuine. Beleive me, I would NEVER want to lose Adsense nor have go away. My sites pull in a decent buck and keeping it honest is the ONLY way advertisers will keep bidding up and keywords.

Thanks again



 9:19 pm on Feb 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

TonysDesigns- I don't think it's a big deal.

Regardless of the technical measures Google uses, they're most certainly not after the people that accidentally click on one of their links.


Security through obscurity does not work, and if G's protection measures don't work they're worse than none. They have brilliant people working for them, and they're probably not worried about us trying to figure out how their system works.

Someone trying to game their system would have to spoof IP and user-agent, as well as blend in statistically with the click patterns expected by Google. Anyone that can do all that can certainly make a million bucks with any number of legal means and so I wouldn't expect them to bother trying to hack Google. Besides, it would only work for a little while until G caught on and started using fairly simple counter-measures.

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