Phone Fraud: How to Protect Your Company

By Rich Kahn, April 20, 2017

Advertisers are losing $7.2 billion annually to ad fraud. Did you know that includes pay per call fraud, too?  

While it’s harder to hack pay per call than say pay per click, it’s not impossible. Where there’s money to be made, fraudsters will always find a way. Unfortunately, once they game the system, you stand to lose money and leads.

Fight back by employing these simple tips to protect your company from phone fraud.

Always Vet Your Publishers First

Just like you wouldn’t hire a potential employee without viewing their LinkedIn profile or Googling them first, do the same for potential publishers.

Related Post: Ad Fraud 101: 8 Types of Ad Fraud That Plague All Marketers

Poke around on their website, read customer reviews, and look into their target audience. If you find something unsettling like the absence of a live person to talk to, simply move onto a more reputable publisher.  


Source: Makeameme

Don’t feel guilty for digging deep. It’s your brand’s reputation and money on the line. Always proceed with caution and do your homework. You need to know who you’re working with.

Know Your Target Demographic

Detecting out-of-demo calls is easier when you have a target demographic (e.g. age, gender, location) you’re serving.

Let’s say you’re a surfboard company targeting 18 to 30-year-old professional surfers. One of your sales reps gets an unusual spike in calls from Alaska. However, your company doesn’t do much business in Alaska, other than the occasional surfer who travels to a warmer climate to surf for vacation.

Related Post: How to Combat Pay Per Call Fraud

These calls clearly have a high potential for fraud, which was easy to spot since you have a specific demographic you cater to.

Use IVR to Qualify Calls

There’s nothing more frustrating than paying for fraudulent calls. Catch fraud before it hits your wallet by qualifying calls early on. An Interactive Voice Response System (IVR) can help filter out calls, separating the fraudulent ones from the qualified leads.


Source: Memegenerator

For example, an IVR can qualify a call by offering options like “press 1 to make a purchase,” “press 2 for customer support.” Callers who press 2 are morely likely to be current customers and not qualified leads.

Related Post: 4 Ways to Get More Insurance Leads with Pay per Call

Don’t Forget to Record Your Calls

While your IVR is great for filtering leads, don’t forget to record your calls. Call recordings can capture fraud on tape. When you analyze your recordings you’ll be able to spot red flags like caller patterns indicative of fraudulent robocallers.

Don’t be a victim of call fraud. Be proactive by vetting your publishers, having a target demographic, qualifying with IVR, and recording your calls. Taking these types of preventative measures will help decrease your risk of pay per call fraud.

Download Your PPC Ebook Now!

Tags: Pay Per Call

Rich Kahn

Rich Kahn

Rich Kahn is the Founder and CEO of, a digital advertising firm focused on pay per click and pay per call advertising, and digital ad quality through ad fraud traffic management. He has more than 23 years of global experience in internet technology, digital advertising, and ad fraud management, and is often revered for his implementation of fraud elimination techniques and client growth. Previously, Rich founded his own internet service provider, First Street Corporation and co-founded Paid for Surf, an advertising software company, before joining the pay per click advertising network AdOrigin as its COO. Rich has held management roles at Verizon Wireless and Bloomberg. More Articles by Rich Kahn