Bot fraud levels spike during major holiday occasions, and reach a peak as the commercial frenzy of Black Friday and Cyber Monday take hold, according to a new study published by the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) and White Ops, a company specializing in digital-advertising security.

Based on the online brand ads run by 49 ANA members between October 2016 and January 2017 – a group featuring American Express, Bank of America, Coca-Cola, General Mills, Lowe's, MillerCoors, Pernod Ricard, Target, Unilever and Walmart – and a comparison of this data with two previous studies, both conducted in August and September, their analysis found a variance in ad fraud centered around certain important dates.

"We observed fraud levels jumping at key holiday periods, specifically Black Friday and Cyber Monday," the "Bot Baseline 2016–2017: Fraud in Digital Advertising" report revealed. "Fraud levels lowered and stayed more consistent for flat spenders for the remainder of the holiday season, while fraud levels for seasonal spenders continued spiking throughout the entire period."