Procter & Gamble’s Chief Brand Officer, Marc Pritchard sounded the call for industry action when he cautioned, “[With] fraud as high as 20%, who knows if [consumers are] even seeing our ads.”  Advertisers will lose $51 million to ad fraud every single day in 2018, totaling $19 billion for the year, according to an estimate by  Juniper Research .

We commend Mr. Pritchard for taking the industry to task. PubMatic has a long-standing commitment to transparency and ensuring publishers maintain control of their ad decisioning. PubMatic has no tolerance for fraud on our platform. We strive to protect advertiser’s trust by maintaining a  clean media buying platform with t he highest inventory quality and brand safety standards.  We wanted to share how we have been doing our part in May 2018:   

Display/Video Fraud Rates

PubMatic set a goal of less than 3% Display and Video fraud rates for 2018. We are pleased to announce we have once again bested these targets (and then some) in May 2018: 


  • Our Display fraud rate in May averaged a paltry 1.6%--nearly half of the 3% target! 
  • Our Video fraud rate in May shrank even further to .87%--roughly 1/4 of the target! 

Flagged Domains/Apps

Every week, we identify apps and websites (domains) that report Invalid Traffic (IVT), also more broadly referenced as ad fraud, that exceed our inventory policy threshold of 3%. These individual properties are pulled from supply.

As the chart shows below, PubMatic flagged 4,465 domains and 284 apps in May 2018,  demonstrating our global IQ team’s vigilance through constant monitoring and investigating inventory to maximize the quality of supply. This rigorous process goes beyond just using layers of proprietary and third-party tools to detect Invalid traffic.


The flagged domains and apps demonstrate our global IQ team’s vigilance through constant monitoring and investigating inventory to maximize the quality of supply. This rigorous process goes far beyond layers of proprietary and third-party tools to detect IVT.


IQ Initiatives

Inventory Quality Team:  We have a dedicated global Inventory Quality (IQ) team that adamantly believes a clean environment benefits everyone. We take a rigorous approach to eliminating and preventing ad fraud. Our operational processes help us combat ad fraud, as it happens.


Through daily reporting and a combination of automation and manual processes, we identify IQ issues and communicate with the relevant publisher to develop a plan of action. The IQ team reviews fraud reporting, and investigates inventory flagged for quality from both internal and external signals before relaying findings to our customer success management teams. If improvements are not seen within a defined timeframe, we move to pause or terminate the publisher account.


Global Quality Partnerships:  In addition to our proprietary technology, we partner with Media Rating Counsel (MRC) accredited inventory quality vendors, such as Integral Ad Science (IAS) and White Ops, which conduct brand-safety checks and inventory screening across multiple formats and platforms. We view these vendors as partners, sharing data and feedback to keep ahead of fraud schemes. A press release about our White Ops partnership is  available here .


Fraud-Free Program:  PubMatic has been pleased to offer our Fraud-Free Program for our demand partners since November 2017. Within the program, if fraud is detected, our demand partners won’t have to pay for it.


To keep our clients, partners and industry informed of PubMatic’s stand against fraud with a money-back guarantee, we wanted to detail our  Fraud-Free Program  here.


In conclusion, w e will continue our efforts to maintain a brand-safe programmatic ecosystem. PubMatic will  fight the good fight  and we urge our supply-chain partners to  join us  in helping to ensure the programmatic ecosystem is clean.  Contact us today  to learn how you can benefit from a clean programmatic landscape.


We hope you enjoyed this report on some of PubMatic’s Inventory Quality efforts in May 2018. If you have any questions about the IQ reports or methodology,  please reach out to  Karl Moats , Director, Product Marketing.

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