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This 71 message thread spans 3 pages: 71 ( [1] 2 3 > >     
Revenge by click fraud - what to do?
qbert




msg:1331441
 12:11 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

One of my websites is a site on religion with a forum. I guess someone got angry, and now he says that he is going to use some plug in (?) for firefox to click ads on my site over and over again. After I told him that I would just ban his ip, he said the plug in will let him use a different ip all the time. is this true? am I going to have to remove the ads just to prevent this?

 

security56




msg:1331442
 12:30 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

Well I was about to make a topic similar to yours, someone is already doing this to me, they clicking like crazy, I email google today about it, waiting for their reply I suggest you do the same

Curiosity




msg:1331443
 2:30 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

You could also set up your forum so that only signed-in members see ads, then ban his account(s). Heck, I'd ban his account anyway. No forum needs members like that.

flyerguy




msg:1331444
 2:47 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

" You could also set up your forum so that only signed-in members see ads, then ban his account(s). "

Google's Mediabot is too busy to register for your forum.

AKA. Ads will not be displayed on password-protected areas.

Curiosity




msg:1331445
 4:22 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

Earlier, people were talking about how to display ads only to registered members. Since I don't have a forum, I don't know the technical details, but apparently there's a workaround to make it possible.

blairsp




msg:1331446
 5:39 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

firefox allows you to use proxies which is probably what he is talking about. Proxies aren't perfect and unless he knows what he is doing it will be perfectly obvious to Google and probably yourself. TELL GOOGLE though but if he/she does go ahead then a clear pattern will easily emerge.

jomaxx




msg:1331447
 6:54 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

If you have the email address or even just the IP address of the person making the threat, you have a reasonable chance of identifying him and making life very very difficult for him if he does attack your site. There's potential for criminal liability, civil liability, and general stuff like getting his ISP to revoke his web access.

Of course part of this depends on where he is and how much money you want to spend defending your business.

thvi




msg:1331448
 7:19 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

Earlier, people were talking about how to display ads only to registered members. Since I don't have a forum, I don't know the technical details, but apparently there's a workaround to make it possible.

Please would someone post the threads relevant to this idea?

flyerguy




msg:1331449
 7:33 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

Set a cookie and/or session ID that is associated only with a unique user ID. Then, display the Adsense units to only those who have that cookie or session ID.

mojomike




msg:1331450
 11:01 pm on May 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

best bet is to capture his IP... and how you do this? with a web cookie and maybe some sort of active agent ( givn I don't think firefox accept active agent's but it might be worth a try )

Mike

momotan




msg:1331451
 12:49 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

An even better idea is to not get into fights with people over inane topics that could affect your business. Keep you mouth shut and next time you won't attract this kind of crap.

Ack66




msg:1331452
 2:22 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

I believe this could be a real problem. After some research I have found that there is an extention to firefox that lets you run your own javascript against any webpage you are viewing. On that extension's site there is a published script that uses
GM_xmlhttpRequest to prefetch all the google ads displayed on a page. Combine this with the reload page every 30 second extention and you have a serious weapon against anysite you dont like.

burntan




msg:1331453
 4:36 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

If the attacker wanted to attack you, even you shutdown your site and web server, they can just copy your Adsense ID and display ads on the attacker's own scraper site to abuse it.

How to prevent?

activeco




msg:1331454
 8:51 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

I don't think that will be a simple task for the guy.
It's not only IP that matters, I guess he would have to clear cookies every time he clicks.
Anyway, if I were you, I would ask Google for advice.

thvi




msg:1331455
 8:53 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hello Everyone,

Some great replies here. The one that motivated me to reply was

An even better idea is to not get into fights with people over inane topics that could affect your business. Keep you mouth shut and next time you won't attract this kind of crap.

What do other publishers say to this point of view? Revenge by click fraud is totally a reality. What momotan is suggesting is that publishers avoid getting anyone mad. Seems a bit regressive, from a publishing point of view.

But, the lack of any hue and cry from others seems to indicate that such an attitude is well thought of; that most AdSense publishers prefer venality and craveness - Google pays me, I wont say anything that would bother another person...

I'll post it again, so you can read it.
An even better idea is to not get into fights with people over inane topics that could affect your business. Keep you mouth shut and next time you won't attract this kind of crap.

That's really a hallmark of an open society, isn't it?

Every day, there is a factor of publishers who will get thrown out of AdSense, losing their time and effort in having displayed the ads. Google will refund the clicks, and make the money back in short order.

And, you are complicit. Each time they do this to a publisher of a "hot" topic (or a competitive niche topic), the web loses a publisher, and a voice while Google gets its payment on the float of the smaller publisher's work.

What will it take to get publishers to demand a system that cannot be so easily gamed? When will you all have the strength to say, if one publisher can be the "Revenge by click fraud - what to do?" publisher, then can't we ALL can be that publisher?

The solutions offered are all unteneable: cookies, easliy cleared; ip tracking, surely you have heard of proxies?

Google's context-based ads get their value from the publisher's who create the context. Is there any value in having websites become a places where publishers are told to "keep your mouth shut"? And, all just because of poor design - that Google WONT reconfigure the system.

AdWords users got a system redesign - they got CPM. Doesn't this weeks's revenge by click fraud story, replied to with "just keep quiet" illustrate the humiliating, almost feudal situation publishers accept? What will it take for you to speak out? Aren't you next?

activeco




msg:1331456
 9:03 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

If the attacker wanted to attack you, even you shutdown your site and web server, they can just copy your Adsense ID and display ads on the attacker's own scraper site to abuse it.

That's a really good remark, Burntan.
For a long time I am trying to convince Google to tie publisher's code to the actually registered publisher's sites.
In that way only the clicks coming from your site and matching your code would be counted and credited.
Not only because of the reason you mentioned, but also to wipe out now huge businesses using stealware/parasites on users' pc's in order to steal comissions.

thvi




msg:1331457
 9:13 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

activeco and burntan your remarks show that the AdSense system is totally open to abuse, and publishers are the one's who are punished. To thers, why not speak out like activeco? Or, GoogleGuy, if you are listening, PLEASE DO SOMETHING. I think that if publishers are not protected, then some people might consider opting out enmasse for a week. Is it unreasonable to ask for a system that can't be gamed so easily?

thvi

guitaristinus




msg:1331458
 9:43 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

Is there any value in having websites become a places where publishers are told to "keep your mouth shut"?
A monetary value. That's why we use adsense.

...the web loses a publisher
The web may lose an adsense publisher. So?

...opting out enmasse for a week.
Don't think so.

qbert,
...am I going to have to remove the ads just to prevent this?
Maybe. Let us know what Google recommends, if anything.

thvi




msg:1331459
 10:19 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hello guitaristinus,

Thanks for your reply. When you write:

"The web may lose an adsense publisher. So?" What if that publisher was you? And, when it is you, will it be "So?" then? I'd be interested in your response to this. To others: why is everyone so willing to defend a system that patently fails to protect publishers? Why not speak up and demand a better system?

When I asked:
"Is there any value in having websites become a places where publishers are told to "keep your mouth shut"?

And you said:

"A monetary value. That's why we use adsense."

Would you say money trumps ALL? Are you willing to "keep your mouth shut" for money? Some people would argue that this is an ideal that is not for sale. I've tried to makle the case from both sides, that, of course, being able to be free from vandalism for speech is a universal value.

But, more practically, for those of you who don't feel this way, the question still redounds to you: you can LOSE your money due to Google's inferiorly designed system - while they are guaranteed their money, and able to use your work to the last minute. If being made a coward doesn't discomfort you, why not agitate for a better system to protect your investment?

Your site can be next for the "Revenge by click fraud - what to do?" treatment. What will be posted next week? Why not ASK Google, nay DEMAND that they do something about it now to protect your time, ionvestment and money? AdWords users did, and look what they got. Why not publishers?

qbert




msg:1331460
 10:22 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

I think I will kill the ads on the forum. No biggie, the forum does not really get many clicks on ads anyway.

thvi




msg:1331461
 10:35 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

In the military there is a special term for people who give up so easily.

Google AdSense: Just Keep Your Mouth Shut, or Give Up - and Thanks for the Billions.

This week it is "Revenge by click fraud - what to do?", what will next week bring? Publishers in EVERY OTHER VENUE get protection. No actor, writer, broadcaster or singer would accept a system that puts ads on his or her work and then can arbitrarily pull earned income WHEN TECHNICAL SOLUTIONS EXIST.

1milehgh80210




msg:1331462
 11:27 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

I suspect that in internet publishing, like 'real life', if someone is truly out to 'get you', there's not much you can do about it. However...like in real life all you can do is take the best precautions you can and run your business normally.

guitaristinus




msg:1331463
 11:34 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

And, when it is you, will it be "So?"
Yes, it will be.

Would you say money trumps ALL?
We're only talking about Adsense. At least I am. That is the extent of this forum.

If you don't like Adsense, don't use it.

security56




msg:1331464
 11:54 am on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

guitaristinus, I think you missing thvi point, the technology is out there so why doesnt google use it, instead of us keeping our mouth shut to protect our sites.

Anyways I having the same problem right now, I email google and no repond yet, is there anything I can do in my part to find out whose ip is doing this.

Thanks

Nikke




msg:1331465
 12:12 pm on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

The answer to the question of how to display ads to registered users only with the exception of Google is quite easy.

Cloak!

Require a cookie OR that the user agent is the Google Mediabot for displaying AdSense ads.

However. This is yet another thread that supports my desicion to never use AdSense in a forum.

activeco




msg:1331466
 12:27 pm on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

is there anything I can do in my part to find out whose ip is doing this.

[google.com...]

Or try a general search for "adsense tracking", "adsense tracking scripts", or similar.

security56




msg:1331467
 2:29 pm on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thanks I try those out :)

flyerguy




msg:1331468
 2:37 pm on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

You have got be kidding me, you actually are going to remove Adsense because someone is threatening to perform fraud?

Do you think Adsense is a lemonade stand operation?

1. It doesn't matter if he uses proxies. See [caida.org...] for a tip of the iceberg in how Google and other companies with big bucks to spend can track you, click-happy religious zealots, and every other mere internet user.

2. It doesn't matter if he clicks dozens of times. In all large scale fraud detection schemes there are exceedingly complex behaviour pattern thresholds. Playing an Adsense unit like it's Pong is a no-brainer for them to notice. Do you believe Adsense would regard dozens of clicks from a single user as normal? The answer is no, they don't, and they aren't going to penlize you as the publisher unless there is some kind of tangible connection to you.

My advice to you as an Adsense publisher with 2500 uniques a day for almost 2 years: sit back, relax, and ignore.

activeco




msg:1331469
 3:01 pm on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

That is an interesting link Flyerguy.
While Google is surely no-joke business, I do not think they go so far in tracking yet.
Otherwise we wouldn't hear much about click fraud at all. Unfortunately it is still a big, scary deal for Adwords advertisers.

Magdod




msg:1331470
 3:41 pm on May 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

hehe if I saw this thread a couple of hours ago I wouldn't have applied for an Adsense account.

I have always thought about joining Adsense but I have heard a lot of things that has always kept me from signing up.If you searched on Google for google fraud or people complaining about adsense you'll find a lot.A lot said that they just recieved an email saying there is clicking fraud and that there account will be cancelled without anymore explanation.they tried emailing the support but they never heared from them.I know some of these people may have really tried to fool google yet I'm sure that there are some that were attacked.What if someone can code a script or a spider/bot that can click your ads.what if he can upload it to hundreds of free hosts and attack all your sites from different ips of the hosts.Ok,I know nothing about programing but I'm pretty sure this can be done with all this kind of hackers.

Yes I have joined Adsense but I'll never use it as my main source of income.There's a lot of affiliates programs online and I think a lot uses adsense a lot as they can see their earning growing steadily while with affiliates programs you get the money with each sale.I haven't used Adsense before but I'd say that I can get the same from affiliates programs as adsense for the same period of time.

Onething that could keep things a bit better is that noone should know your sites.I'd never ever use adsense on a forum or on a religious site,Why?because google can't protect their publishers from fraud.

If google accepted my application as a new publisher,the first thing I'm going to do is to email them asking if there's any script that can protect my ads from fraud.

And finally
"Don't put all your eggs in one basket." ;)

This 71 message thread spans 3 pages: 71 ( [1] 2 3 > >
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