Case Studies

Fake Device Installs on rise in OTT Industry



OTT industry is expected to grow at 22% a year and will reach Rs. 12,000 crores by 2026 in India. These platforms are enjoying their moment of sun and shining across the globe owing to Covid19, movement restriction, smartphone penetration & accessible high-speed mobile internet. In India alone, OTT consumption has accelerated with Amazon Prime and Netflix reporting an average of 65% rise in subscriptions. Local players such as AltBalaji, Zee5, and many other have witnessed a surge in installs and user base. 

Dropping the bomb at the onset, despite the growth, the OTT industry is also caught up in the whirlwind of online fraud in recent times. Fake device installs are contributing to a whopping 41% of total installs. The figure is mind-boggling. The extent to which the number of subscriptions and downloads are quoted is somehow ironical to the fact that the industry is pretty much marred with cases of fake installs, non-playstore downloads (at 15%), thus skewing the reported numbers.

With people being forced to stay indoors, the surge in OTT consumption (and demand) has pushed these players to spend heavily on marketing for enhancing the visibility of their app. However, the ROI on these investments has been a bone of contention for the number of installs did not justify the budget drain.

mFilterIt got down to the task of unearthing the mystery behind these skewed data and ensuring that the brands only pay for valid traffic.

What does a fake device install mean?

Fraudsters steal billions of advertiser’s ad budgets through app install fraud, aka fake device install.

App install fraud takes place in numerous fraudulent ways where fake mobile users are created to show ‘genuine’ app installs. In attribution manipulation fraud, actual install credits are stolen on behalf of legitimate downloads. In most cases, publishers direct user to install the app from third-party APK stores which impact the brand’s image and competitive advantage as play store stats do not reflect these installs.

Upon analyzing over 2 million installs, it is observed that 71% of these installs are fake with Device fraud (non playstore+ fake device+ duplicate user+ incorrect region) contributing to 56% of fraud. Another 12% accounting for click fraud (Click spam, fake attribution), an industry-wide menace.

The Math

Need we say more? In an era of Covid19, increased smartphone and internet penetration, rise of digital payment and OTT platforms, majority of the ad spends are being lost to fraudulent activities with advertisers paying little to no attention. It is time that such issues are addressed in the upcoming digital world to secure the advertiser’s money and protect the brand’s image.

Connect with us to know more about these issues and how can you build a firewall of defense.

    Download Case Study!!