posted on Jul, 23 2015 @ 12:57 PM
Thousands of mobile applications are secretly running ads that can't be seen by users, defrauding marketers and slowing down smartphones, according
to a new report by Forensiq, a firm that tracks fraud in online advertising.
Forensiq identified over 5,000 apps that display unseen ads on both Apple and Android devices. Advertisers are paying about $850 million for these
ads each year, according to the report, and the apps with the highest rate of ad fraud can burn through 2 gigabytes of data per day on a single
The apps, says Forensiq, were hitting these numbers by showing as many as five ads in the background for every ad visible to users. Some
apps continued to scroll through ads even after the app had been closed.
Complaints about crashing and slowness are also common on reviews for a series of silly games for Android devices
Surreptitiously running advertisements is a violation of the rules governing all apps available in Apple and Android stores.
The performance issues are almost certainly caused by the extra load resulting from the apps' secondary functions, says Forensiq.