Fighting ad fraud with App-ads.txt

By June 20, 2019 No Comments
Lately, the IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) has released a new set of guidelines for publishers to implement, in an effort to reduce ad fraud, a huge problem resulting in $20B /year of missed revenue for the publishers.
To fight this, the IAB came up with App-ads.txt – a whitelist of the publisher’s authorised resellers. In other words, a list of platforms that the publishers actually works with to sell their inventory.
App-ads.txt is a text file that sits on the publisher’s domain. Each row represents one seller (such as an ad exchange). Each ad exchange partner that supports this initiative will provide the line to include in the file – with their name, unique ID and publisher account number on this platform.
An example of app-ads.txt file, with 2 selling partners: Admix and Myadexchange

How it works

Before buying the inventory, the advertiser or buying platform (such as Demand Side Platforms) will access the publisher website (from the app URL) and try to read
If the ad request comes from a whitelisted seller, the transaction can go through and the ad served. If that isn’t the case, the ad won’t be bought, resulting in a missing opportunity for publishers.
Eventually, as this measure is enforced, we expect that publisher that do not support app-ads.txt will lose over 50% of their revenue.
At Admix, we are working with the largest buying platforms in the world, like Verizon and Pubmatic, and have a very Ferm stance against fraud. Therefore we are asking our publishers to adopt this, to keep maximising their revenue opportunity.

What to do as a publisher

  • Generate your app-ads.txt on the Admix developer platform.
  • If you use other advertising partners or connected to ad exchanges, contact them to ask for the line you need to add in the file
  • Upload the file on – it needs to be on the root domain
  • Make sure to use the domain that is listed on your iOS or Google Play developer profile.
  • You’re up to date!
More questions about app-ads.txt and its implementation ? or contact your account manager!

Author samuel

CEO at Admix

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