Digital ads that met the standards set by the Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) witnessed 94% less fraud and invalid traffic in 2019 across five key European markets, according to an annual update from the advertising industry safety body.

TAG commissioned The 614 Group, a digital advertising consultancy, to conduct a benchmarking study based on 43 billion ad impressions served by three major agency holding companies across the UK, Germany, France, Italy and the Netherlands.

They involved campaigns executed by GroupM, Omnicom Media Group and Publicis Groupe in 2019 and covered display desktop, display mobile, in-app display, mobile web video, desktop video, mobile in-app video and mobile web.

Both General Invalid Traffic (GIVT) and Sophisticated Invalid Traffic (SIVT) were examined and all the impressions were delivered via TAG-certified channels.

The 614 Group research found the overall fraud rate hit 9.2% over the study period, but this dropped to just 0.53% of ads that used channels certified by TAG, with the result equating to a 94% decline when compared with the wider industry average.

TAG suggested that these gains were driven by widespread European adoption of its Certified Against Fraud Seal, which has more than tripled over the past two years.

“Past studies have shown that using TAG certified distribution channels can reduce fraud rates to very low, predictable and manageable levels, but a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, which is why we are so delighted by the broad adoption of TAG’s anti-fraud standards across Europe,” said Mike Zaneis, CEO of TAG.

“In the last two years, the digital advertising supply chain in Europe has been forged into an interlocking barrier of TAG certifications against fraud, leaving criminals few gaps to exploit or holes in which to hide,” he added.

For more about TAG’s Certified Against Fraud Program and what advertisers can gain from its suite of anti-fraud tools, click here or read WARC’s in-depth report: TAG’s tips for tackling ad fraud.

Sourced from TAG; additional content by WARC staff