IAS partners with Verizon and a host of publishers to tackle CTV ad fraud

Integral Ad Science is looking to safeguard CTV against ad fraud

While over-the-top media can combine the targetability of digital with the reach of TV, it can open up a traditionally safe viewing environment to ad fraud. To tackle this, Integral Ad Science (IAS) today announced it is piloting a verification program that will measure video ad completion on connected televisions (CTV).

Verizon is currently the only advertising partner, so IAS will be measuring completion across the Verizon ads placed across eight video publishers testing the solution, including NBC Universal and CBS Interactive.

IAS and its partners will work to establish a set of available CTV data points and then develop machine learning models that judge the quality of an impression.

An IAS spokesperon said the company cannot name all eight publisher partners at this time.

Lisa Utzschneider, chief executive officer at IAS, said CTV should be less susceptible to fraud because the majority of impressions come through high-quality publishers. It also doesn't support cookies or click-throughs, which fraudsters often fake or manipulate.

Still, Utzschneider wants to be ahead of the curve as CTV is still a relatively nascent medium that fraudster may still look to exploit.

"The industry is learning from each new environment that emerges on how to best get ahead of ad fraud, viewability, and brand safety challenges," said Utzschneider.

"From our 10 years of experience in the industry, we know that fraud follows where advertising dollars are being spent. As new environments start emerging it is crucial for major players in the market to work together to develop a solution that sets industry standards and drives innovation."

While IAS, Verizon and a handful of publishers are partnering on this initiative, Utzschneider said the overall lack of CTV measurement standards can be costly for media buyers.

"A lack of standards and alignment between stakeholders creates a whole host of problems and challenges. It makes measuring your media spend time intensive, cumbersome, and often the results advertisers receive aren't as accurate as they could be because of misreporting and flagging."

Slowly, though, CTV standards are being fine-tuned and widely adopted. The latest iteration of video ad standard Vast 4.1 has helped make the CTV ad experience more consumer friendly, and is a key protocol underlying IAS's initiative.

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