App install advertising fraud is 60% higher in APAC than global average

Anne Freier

In Mobile Advertising. June 25, 2019

Advertising fraud continues to be a challenge for marketers in the APAC region, with app install fraud posing the greatest danger. Data by AppsFlyer reveals that app install fraud in APAC is 60% higher than the global average.

Fraud in the area is shaped by higher marketer demand for higher volumes, a larger number of fraudulent traffic in local networks and cost-per-action (CPA) business models.

Over a measurement period of six months, financial exposure to fraud reached $650 million.

Over half of non-organic installs of finance apps were fraudulent in APAC. Indeed, finance apps saw fraud rates 2.5x higher than other category apps across Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam, however, not in Japan.

Meanwhile, shopping and travel app fraud rates reached 35%, whilst game apps had some of the lower fraud rates at just 5-6%.

Japan presented with some of the lowest fraud rates across APAC.

Bot-based fraud attacks were the most prevalent across APAC with all app verticals experiencing at least 25% of bot attacks.

Click flooding was low across all app verticals apart from finance apps, where it is 21% of total fraud in all countries.

Android devices experienced 4x higher fraud rates compared to iOS. However, Android is the dominant mobile operating system in the region.

More APAC marketers have shifted to CPA payment models with a focus on in-app conversions rather than installs. The assumption tends to be that they are getting cleaner traffic because in-app fraud is harder to perpetrate than install fraud. However, as fraudsters are becoming more sophisticated that may be a dangerous assumption.