ISPs and ad networks against botnet ad fraud

Nevena Vratonjic, Mohammad Hossein Manshaei, Maxim Raya, Jean Pierre Hubaux

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

8 Scopus citations


Botnets are a serious threat on the Internet and require huge resources to be thwarted. ISPs are in the best position to fight botnets and there are a number of recently proposed initiatives that focus on how ISPs should detect and remediate bots. However, it is very expensive for ISPs to do it alone and they would probably welcome some external funding. Among others, botnets severely affect ad networks (ANs), as botnets are increasingly used for ad fraud. Thus, ANs have an economic incentive, but they are not in the best position to fight botnet ad fraud. Consequently, ANs might be willing to subsidize the ISPs to do so. We provide a game-theoretic model to study the strategic behavior of ISPs and ANs and we identify the conditions under which ANs are likely to solve the problem of botnet ad fraud by themselves and those under which the AN will subsidize the ISP to achieve this goal. Our analytical and numerical results show that the optimal strategy depends on the ad revenue loss of the ANs due to ad fraud and the number of bots participating in ad fraud.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDecision and Game Theory for Security - First International Conference, GameSec 2010, Proceedings
Number of pages19
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
Event1st International Conference on Decision and Game Theory for Security, GameSec 2010 - Berlin, Germany
Duration: Nov 22 2010Nov 23 2010

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume6442 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference1st International Conference on Decision and Game Theory for Security, GameSec 2010


  • Ad Fraud
  • Ad Network
  • Botnets
  • Game Theory
  • ISP
  • Security

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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