Ads expert says ad tech can be ‘cursed’ by cyberattacks
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The ad industry is facing a digital curse after a wave of malicious cyberattacks over the past few months.
The advertising industry is grappling with the fallout of cyberattacks that left dozens of companies and individuals offline for weeks or months, with companies like Target and DHL also facing legal troubles.
But there is one sector that’s not immune to the onslaught: online ads.
A study from a leading online ad industry company, AdExpert, said it could take up to a year before the ad industry can recover from the onslaught.
“We expect that there’s going to be a lag in the recovery, especially as the ads market evolves,” said Andrew Smith, president and CEO of AdExist.
“So, in terms of ad revenue, you’re still going to have a lag until you can actually start to see an uptick in ad revenue,” he said.
Smith said some advertisers are using digital advertising strategies that will take time to become effective, and he thinks the industry will have to learn to adapt.
“It’s a challenge for the advertising industry, because the ad tech is so dynamic and there are so many factors at play,” he added.
AdExpert says it’s been tracking cyberattacks on online ads for nearly a year.
Its study was published in January and found that attacks had increased dramatically since October.
The company surveyed companies from about 100 different countries, and found nearly half of the companies surveyed experienced at least one cyberattack.
Smith also said the ad world has been dealing with the aftermath of an unprecedented cyberattack in December, which affected thousands of companies.
AdExista said it expects to see about 50% of online ad spend disappear for a few weeks or a month, and the ad revenue will drop to about $6 billion a month from $10 billion a year earlier.
“I think that’s a fair amount of disruption, and it will take some time to get to a normal business environment,” Smith said.
Advertisers are already adapting to the cyberattacks.
The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) and the American Advertising Federation (AAA) are launching an advertising partnership in the wake of the attacks.
Advertisers in the industry have also started to implement ad tech to protect their brands.
“The ad tech industry is going to need to do some pretty serious business changes to recover from these challenges,” Smith added.
He said a number of companies are already trying to recover.
For example, the AAA is launching a campaign to promote its own ad platform.
“There’s a lot of organizations and individual ad companies that are doing some pretty good work right now, but there are some very, very big players that are not doing so well,” he noted.
“We see that with the AAA.
It’s going in a new direction, and we think it’s going a really good place.”
The NAB is currently trying to help some companies recover from cyberattacks by offering a free trial of its ad platform, and a $10,000 scholarship for those who can recover.
“Our mission is to help those organizations who are affected recover from this,” Smith explained.
He also said it’s not clear what the long-term damage of the cyberattack will be for the ad market.
“Some people think that if you’re really bad, you can take over the world, but that’s just not true,” he admitted.
“That doesn’t mean that the damage you can do in the short term won’t be there for a while.”
But Smith said some companies are doing better than others.
“When you’re looking at an individual company, it’s really important to look at how they’re doing over the course of the year,” he explained.
“And then you can make some educated guesses about what that company’s going through, and how they are doing in terms that they’re able to recover.”
The ad industry is facing a digital curse after a wave of malicious cyberattacks over the past few months.The advertising…
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