Bogus activity generated by an affiliate in an attempt to generate illegitimate revenue.
Fraudulent activity by affiliates comes in both automated and non-automated varieties. Automated scripts attempt to mimic the activity of legitimate, human visitors. Non-automated schemes may involve coordinated efforts by humans actively generating excess clicks or registrations.
After the fact, affiliate fraud can sometimes be spotted by checking activity logs for unusual patterns. Proactive protection may involve manually approving affiliate applications, although this minimization of fraud must be balanced against the risk of losing legitimate, productive affiliates who don’t want to wait for approval.
see also: Affiliate Marketing Tools
Fraud: Affiliates Fight Back
ClickZ (April 20, 2001)
Fraud: An Affiliate Epidemic
ClickZ (April 6, 2001)
Fighting Hotline Fraud
ClickZ (June 23, 2000)
Beware of Fraud
ClickZ (April 14, 2000)