A significant minority (5%) of all marketing emails are opened by bots, as scammers flock to “click scam bots” to spoof email-based conversions, if research by Polygraph is to be believed.
An extremely common type of cyber fraud, “click fraud”, is where website owners use deceptive methods such as bots or automated scripts to fake legitimate clicks on their ads.
Since these site owners are paid based on the number of people who click on their ads, this generates income for the scammer.
How does this process work?
In the process, scammers create an account on the advertiser’s website. The scammer then receives an email with a link to activate the account, according to Trey Vanes, head of marketing at Polygraph.
Bots that are programmed to monitor the scammer’s inbox for new emails click on any links contained in those emails.
Vanes claims that by doing so he tricks advertisers into believing the registrations are real, so they start sending marketing emails to the scammers.
These marketing emails are then opened by scam bots as they are programmed to open any emails and click on their links, tricking the advertiser into thinking they are gaining engagement.
But it’s not just click fraud that’s costing UK businesses big bucks.
A clear majority – 64% – of UK businesses have experienced an incident of economic crime in the last two years, according to a PWC study of 107 UK businesses, well above the global average of 46%.
Email services continue to play a huge role in these types of scams affecting businesses in the UK.
A study by security provider Ivanti found that nearly three-quarters (74%) of organizations said they were the victim of a phishing attack last year, which was mostly delivered via email.