Google is giving the advertising world a peek into the size and scope of the industry's seedier elements. The company, in a blog post on the industry's 'bad ads,' said it rejected 1.25 million applications from publishers looking to join its network in 2014. The applications were tossed due to concerns over ad fraud, malware, misleading promises and more.
"The scammers are actually standing up literally hundreds of thousands of sites," said Vikaram Gupta, director of ads engineering at Google, in an interview. Mr. Gupta said these scammers are scaling the breadth of their attacks, knowing the sites they set up will likely get rejected during the application process or shortly thereafter.
Google's network includes its ad exchange and Ad Sense offering. Those two combined make Google the single biggest ad-tech company in the world. And its post this morning shows it's looking to play something of a sheriff's role on ad quality issues. Google rejected even more applications in 2013, shutting down three million applicants.
In addition to the rejected applications, Google said it disabled 160,000 websites already on its network in 2014 and canned 250,000 for hiding malware.
See Google's infographic below for more information.