Application Security

This is Not an Ad Blocker!

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Recently, as I was explaining to a VP of Digital how Page Defender could increase business on his website, he dropped the following question: “How is this different than an ad blocker?”

For someone that has been following this field and Page Defender, this would be obvious, right? Then I thought about it a bit more, and I think that there is something deeper to what he was asking.

Let me give you some background.

In 2018, Google launched a built-in ad blocker for Chrome. This means that you don't need an add-on to block ads, and more importantly, Google now automatically blocks ads on sites that have lower ad ratings according to standards set by the Coalition for Better Ads. This bold move means a lot to users who have been exhausted by online ads and pop ups.

These changes were made to stop intrusive browser ads that dominate your web experience. According to Stat Counter, 56% of users on the web are Chrome users who therefore, benefit the most. The blocked ads are ads that have been approved by the publisher, however Google believes them to be intrusive and harmful to the users’ experience.

So, we’ve been asked by a few of our clients about this change, especially now that it's in full swing. If Google is already blocking these harmful ads, do we still need Page Defender protection?

The short answer is: of course! Let me explain why.

There are two types of ads; intended legitimate ads integrated deliberately by a website and ads that are unauthorized and injected ads stemming from malware on the user side.

Google Chrome Ad Blocker and all such ad blockers target those ads which have been intentionally integrated and come from an online ad network, but are deemed by Google to be too intrusive.

However, the ad blocker does nothing to protect against user-side malware ads which distort the experience on your website and hurt conversion.

These ‘fake ads’ are far riskier for you and your business. First, they can tarnish your user experience and brand by running highly intrusive ads that are frequently very risque such as porn and gambling ads! Second, these ads aren’t yours, so you’re not benefiting from them, someone else is! Third, they are driving traffic away. These pop ups are calling users away from you to complete their purchases elsewhere, effectively, stealing your user base.

In reality, up to 20% of your users will see malware ads and convert poorly!

So let’s summarize - both these ads are likely to run on your website, one intended and one not. Google is working hard to make sure your users get the best ads possible, and PerimeterX is here to stop malware from ruining your users’ experience AND make sure that ads are what you intended. To learn more about preventing unauthorized ad injections, check out my webinar.

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