|The Fraud Fighter: How White Ops Helped Put Ad Waste (and Itself) on the Map
Ad fraud is no longer the media industry’s dirty little secret. December’s report from a little-known web security startup called White Ops of a Russian fraud operation even made cable TV news. “My mom asked me about it,” groaned Scott Knoll, CEO of Integral Ad Science, one of the leading ad fraud detection firms. “That’s when you know it’s jumped the shark.”
Founded in 2013, New York-based White Ops started out fighting malware and bank fraud, but it quickly discovered the most sophisticated fraudsters were drawn to the advertising industry. Now at 60 people, it was newer and smaller than 450-person IAS and another leading ad verification player, DoubleVerify. So in 2014, it teamed up with the Association of National Advertisers on a bombshell report that said ad fraud was costing advertisers $6.3 billion. It was called the most comprehensive look at the fraud problem to date.
White Ops also realized it had a killer marketing strategy: To sell its fraud detection tools to ad platforms, brands, publishers, it would establish itself as the authority on ad fraud, and the customers would follow. White Ops co-founder and CEO Michael Tiffany calls it “substantive marketing.”
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This article was published on Digiday.com. A full link to the original piece is after the story.
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