TAG Anti-Fraud Description of Methodology

About Newsweek Media Group

Newsweek Media Group (NMG) is a multinational Publishing Company with Headquartered in New York, the company has offices in New York (USA), London (UK) and Bangalore (India).

Websites subject to this Description of Methodology:

Newsweek Media Group and Anti-Fraud Certification
Newsweek Media Group (“NMG”) is committed to the promotion of transparency and to a fraud free advertising marketplace. As part of such commitment, NMG is a participant in the Trustworthy Accountability Group (“TAG”) Certified Against Fraud Program and adheres to TAG Certified Against Fraud Guidelines, which includes:

  • Performing an internal audit on a quarterly basis to ensure that the guidelines are being followed;
  • Submitting two public affidavits to the TAG annually, one from the Compliance Officer and one from the CEO or COO; and
  • Submitting to an annual validation performed by an independent third party approved by TAG, to provide additional assurance that NMG complies with the Certified Against Fraud

Newsweek Media Group team has engaged with an external auditor to be independently validated on the TAG Certification Against Fraud as an added layer of assurance.

This document is not intended to replace TAG standard Terms & Conditions contained in their client contracts and agreements, it is intended to supplement those documents to disclose their practices under the Anti-Fraud Guidelines.

Anti-Fraud Operations and Controls

Invalid Traffic Processes and frequency

Parameter Based and Activity Based Detection

NMG performs the following Parameter Based and Activity Based Detection checks:

  • Data center IP threat filtering:
    • NMG uses a third party IVT tool/platform as part of the NMG pre-bid blocking
    • Additionally, NMG has an internal IP black-list.
  • User-Agent list:
    • NMG’s third party IVT tool/platform uses the IAB user agent list in their pre-bid blocking process.
    • Additionally, NMG keeps an internal User-agent list.
  • Domain threat filtering
    • NMG identifies and monitors referral domains and blocks domains as needed. NMG keeps a domain block list. The list is updated monthly.
  • Third party IVT tools are used to 100% of display and video impressions that reach the sites.
  • Impression reconciliation between the ad server and the MRC Accredited IVT reporting/detection tools are performed daily, weekly and monthly, to verify that every impression that can be measured by each IVT tool is being monitored.
    • monitoring is performed at the campaign and the site level.
  • Traffic sources are analyzed and reconciled weekly and monthly.
  • Identifying, researching and resolving IVT levels above internal thresholds:
    • Alerts are set up for all campaigns and/or sites that reach internal IVT thresholds
    • Once alerts are sent, a trouble shooting and resolution process starts, involving MRC Accredited IVT tools, ad server, Google Analytics, and any other analytics tools used by NMG, Client and client tools and information.
  • NMG uses a collection of lists, controls and IVT tools for identifying and filtering invalid traffic; including scans and filters that are performed at page level. Once user reaches our sites, NMG monitors every impression (Display and Video) with MRC accredited IVT tools to ensure that NMG inventory is within IVT internal benchmarks. On occasions deeper analyses are performed on a sampling of transactions, or when suspicious activity is detected.
  • Additional Activity Based Detection are performed on a weekly basis, as part of our IVT management process, to minimize our fraud exposure. These activities are triggered if we detected IVT above internal benchmarks. Some of those activity-based detection may include, as needed: Frequency of impressions and clicks by IP, User geography, Speed of impressions, Repeat impressions, Missing values, Inconsistencies of browser/agent parameters

Traffic Acquisition
NMG reviews sources of traffic before engaging with potential partners, against internal IVT rules and policies before approval.

All partners are reviewed by the Business Development and the Business Intelligence Teams, which reviews all sources against NMG’s internal rules and policies before approval.

Partner Qualification
Every potential partner, traffic source, advertising platform, DSP and/or client goes through a partner vetting process to ensure that they comply with NMG’s eligibility criteria. The Vetting process includes:

  • For traffic sources partners:
    • Checking if potential partner is TAG verified and has TAG Anti-Fraud Certification.
    • Inventory review from sources and IVT perspective
    • Interviews with Client and contract when relation is expected to last more than a month.
  • For Advertising platforms, DSP, SSP, and/or clients that buy advertising from NMG:
  • Before NMG commences a relationship with any business partner, the following initial qualification questions are addressed:
    • Is the partner a legitimate business with a permanent address, contact information etc.?
    • Does the business work in compliance with and promote the standards of major ad-tech organizations, such as IAB, MRC and TAG?
    • Is the partner willing to confirm in writing (contract) that they are in compliance with the TAG Inventory Quality Guidelines?
    • Has partner been subject to any material fraud (claims) in the past? How did the partner manage such claim/s?
    • How does the partner combat IVT? What’s their Description of Methodology?

Once these steps have been completed, NMG signs a contract with the partner. NMG standard provisions against fraud are detailed in this document.

Process and Transaction Auditing
After integration, every partner is monitored on a continuous basis to ensure the  levels of IVT and other anomalies are in alignment with  NMG and industry benchmarks and to discover any substantial trends.

To maintain NMG certification through compliance with the TAG Anti-Fraud Guidelines, a quarterly internal audit is conducted by the TAG Compliance Officer.

Compliance Process
NMG has designated a Compliance Officer who is responsible for:

  • Performing any necessary quarterly testing to ensure continued compliance
  • Maintaining this Description of Methodology
  • Preparing annual attestations to compliance

On an annual basis NMG will engage external audit professionals to ensure their continued compliance with TAG Anti-Fraud Guidelines.

Updating Processes
The Advisory Team, which includes members of the Business Intelligence, Ad Serving and Account Management teams, is responsible for invalid traffic identification, process development and process modification on a perpetual basis.  The findings and recommendations of these teams are escalated to the team, which includes the IT team, the Product team, the Head of Advertising Operations, Digital Advertising Yield Director, the VP of Product and BI, the CTO and the COO.

Handling of Complaints
Customer fraud complaints originate through Account Managers.  If fraud is suspected, the matter is forwarded to the Advisory team.  If the suspected fraud is confirmed, the matter is escalated to the Team.  The Solutions team takes a deeper dive into the data to identify the source and develop corrective actions and future controls.  The Solution team will be in communication with the Account Manager, the IVT technology providers and the Client as needed to solve the problem. Once the issue is resolved the Account Manager is notified and the Account Manager notifies the client in written.

Back-wards Looking Assessment and Correction
In the event that any of the impressions sold by NMG to a client is determined or attributed to be fraudulent, invalid, non-human traffic or served on fraudulent websites, applications or properties not included in the contract, and the % of these impressions is above the threshold determined by Media Rating Council (MRC), which today is 5%, or is above the threshold level established in the contract, a backward-looking analysis and correction process will be performed to assess and correct the situation.

  • The backward analysis will be up to 14 days prior to the day when the IVT level surpasses the MRC threshold, following MRC guidance.
  • Client shall be entitled to a make-good for impressions served to fraudulent, non-human or invalid traffic that is above the threshold deemed acceptable as per MRC (today 5%), or is above the threshold level established in the contract, or up to 14 days since the day the IVT level is above applicable threshold.

Feel free to contact us if you have any question regarding IVT or our TAG Certifications by contacting your Account Manager (if you are an existent client) and/or by sending an email to: advisory.team@newsweekgroup.com