B2C Lead generation fraud is a terrible plague and can leave a stain on a company’s reputation with their potential customers and can make them fall foul of the law. This isn’t to also mention leaving costly bills as a terrible reminder that in the 21st century it is more prevalent than ever.
Although in our experience the majority of suppliers and affiliates supply nothing but grade A data, it is the few bad apples which can ruin the day.
Now that it’s become pretty apparent that all data needs to be brand, or sector opted in and timely, we thought we would show some top insights and online fraud detection into the lead fraud that could start, or is currently affecting you.
Over the years, we have processed literally 100’s of millions of leads and below are a few of the ways that we’ve seen them be posted through:
Form-filled leads: One way that B2C leads are used to sneak past the gatekeeper is from pre-filled form leads. A fraudulent lead supplier, or affiliate will create a fake landing page for a genuine brand, consumers will submit their details real time believing it is an offer from the real Co. The lead supplier will then post those leads on to similar companies landing pages using the exact same consumers details, thereby taking the revenue they are generating from the initial lead from 1x to 10x.
List dumping: Not only do companies try to put leads through multiple different forms, they also put large lists of data through to receiving API’s, or FTP’s. This is what is known as ‘list dumping’, which affects many co’s and call centre lead generation processes. The client believes they are getting a file of leads, but in reality someone is just posting their already existing file of list data through an API as if it had just been collected.
Spoofed traffic: this is traffic in which the creative is manipulated to fill in the consumer fields. It looks as if the leads came from multiple different locations and independent visitors and is usually done via a network of proxies and remote desktops. Being able to spot patterns of behavior from these sources and in turn rejecting these leads is almost turning into its own science of online fraud detection.
Incentivised traffic: Another sneaky way that lavishly funds the lifestyles of people out there who are posting through fraudulent leads comes from incentivised traffic. The apps stores are awash with cool games that offer rewards for signing up on things, and there are loads of sites out there that offer points for signing up, or a cashback incentive. While not fraudulent in itself, what could be considered online fraud is when the lead buyer isn’t made aware this is how the data that they are purchasing is being collected.
So what may seem like a light hearted way for a consumer to level up can actually be a sinister plot from certain publishers and affiliates to increase their accepted lead volumes by telling the user that they get a ‘reward’ for getting top of the leader board, or beating friends at a certain game. If this is how publishers are generating leads, they must make the lead buyer aware so that they can make an informed decision on whether to accept these leads, or not.
Not all leads are Equal: Finally as you may know, not all traffic is made equal. There are certain parameters that you as an advertiser will set out when creating your offer. Watch out for sources that have super cheap CPM’s, or CPL’s. You may notice a massive increase in leads coming through, but the quality won’t necessarily come through with it. A lot of these leads could be out of specification, or not aligned with your target demographic.
Revealed here is a hidden world of lead fraud that you can look out for and act on now. But remember the opposite can also be true, middlemen (acting as clients) can say leads are duplicate, or invalid when they are not, or also be re-selling on leads multiple times making the supplier the recipient of fraud.
The key to stopping all of this is TRANSPARENCY - B2C Lead Management Systems can enable this by allowing all stakeholders, clients and suppliers, access to the trail of data that is relevant to them and what is happening with it. The more transparent everything is the less likely the data will be called into question and the more likely that Co’s can spot fraud happening.
Have you had any experience in lead fraud similar to the above? What was the impact? Or, have you been affected by other types of lead fraud that aren’t listed above?
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