Security Researchers Raise The Alarm Against New Fraud Ad Campaign On Google That Makes Millions On Adult Sites

Researchers have signaled an alarm about a new fraudulent advertising campaign that makes use of Google Ads and even some popunders on the search engine.

The campaign is large-scale and is currently generating millions through Adult websites on the search engine, experts revealed. The exact amount of revenue generated through such means was outlined to be nearly $275 a month via stolen articles.

This shocking new campaign was first discovered on Google by Malwarebytes and highlighted to Google today and hence that’s when we saw it taking adequate steps for its removal. Users felt it really violated so many policies and forbade the search engine from displaying such ads across Adult web pages.

For now, there has been no revelation about who exactly is operating such ads but there happens to be evidence linked to it being of Russian origin. Moreover, we even heard about fraudsters launching malicious ad campaigns through such pages and getting all the traffic in the world through popunder advertisements.

Such offerings are extremely cheap in price and end up causing pop-ups to open right behind a browser window. In this way, no user could see it until or unless the browser window moves or shuts down.

On a usual basis, popunders are utilized by the likes of dating services, explicit content portals, and even adult webcams. Moreover, such fraudsters end up creating very real appearing news portals that have scraped content via other websites that are utilized as popunder ads. But instead of displaying a page’s content, they end up being shown as iframes that market TXXX adult websites.

To produce advertising revenue from such popunders, these actors embed Google Ads at the page’s bottom and that is what violates the search engine’s ad policies as can be displayed below.

This form of overlay is produced through iframes made in a dynamic manner that uses heavier codes to prevent the search engine’s bots from fraud detection. This iframe indicates the likes of real explicit websites that import explicit content.

After getting the tab focused, the page’s rotation feature comes to an end and you end up seeing more adult websites, the researchers explained. And when a click is made at any point across a page, you’ll find that it triggers real clicks on ads of Google instead.

When articles end up getting installed in the background, you know immediately how they’re stolen through legit sites such as guides, tutorials, articles, and more websites. Such pages entail at least five different Google Ads including video ones that end up producing more revenue for a site.

Such fraudsters create the right background content for refreshing new articles and adding some new ads every 9 seconds. Hence, when pages stay open for a while like a few minutes, so many fake ad impressions begin to be generated.

Other researchers have noted how their metrics provide that fraud pages produce nearly 300,000 visits each month and that’s an estimated seven minutes and 45 seconds long. Keeping that figure in mind, Malwarebytes says that ad impressions could be estimated at a production rate of 76 million each month. This is $276,000 each month.

Remember how such figures are a mere estimation and we could be seeing their total up to be more than this, which is extremely concerning.

But it’s great news that researchers from Malwarebytes have put this campaign in the limelight and have made Google aware of something it may have never realized thanks to how sophisticated its operations are turning out to be.

Read next: Here’s How Much Influencers Charge for TikTok, YouTube and Instagram Ads
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