Bot fraud levels are in decline but various threats and obstacles – from outmoded technology to the continued strength of “walled gardens” – have become firmly embedded in the digital-marketing experience, a new study has found.

The “2018–2019 Bot Baseline: Fraud in Digital Advertising” report is the latest in a series of studies produced by the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the trade body, and White Ops, a New York-based advertising cybersecurity firm.

And it reveals that bot-fraud levels in the digital-advertising ecosystem will stand at $5.8 billion this year – an 11% decline in dollar value from 2017, and the lowest amount since the analysis began in 2014.

“I don’t usually get to deliver good news,” Michael Tiffany, co-founder/president, White Ops, told delegates at the 2019 ANA Advertising Financial Management Conference as he presented the findings of its research.

“If you’re working in computer security these days, the news is usually bad. So I’m delighted to share some serious good news.”