Mobile app fraud is up in 2021, rural India is an opportunity for app sellers: AppsFlyer report


Mobile apps in India are seeing huge success, but this also makes them a prime target for cybercriminals to carry out fraudulent activity, according to a new report from AppsFlyer. The research firm’s “State of App Marketing in India 2022 Report” also highlights that rural India is a promising opportunity for app vendors, particularly in finance, gaming, news, shopping, utilities verticals. and entertainment.

“It was found that more than 80 percent of all non-organic installations in India were from non-metropolitan areas. Users in Tier 2 and 3 cities, who prefer vernacular content, are now actively contributing to India’s mobile-first economy as they become increasingly hyper-connected,” said Aditya Maheshwari, Director of Customer Success at AppsFlyer.

Meanwhile, metropolitan cities account for 12 percent of all organic installations, while nearly half of all non-organic installations were found to come from six states of Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. . An organic install means there was no direct expense related to that install. Essentially, those users find the app through an app store search.

The report also highlighted that larger apps (by app install volume) tend to have a higher proportion of app installs attributed to fraud. In India, the total financial exposure to mobile app fraud was $91.6 million in 2021 with an overall fraud rate of 19.61 percent. This number is significantly higher than the overall rate.

xiaomi continued to lead the pack with most app installs, with over 22 percent market share, while Samsung continued to hold on
second place (just under 20 percent). However, when it comes to health and fitness, Samsung was ahead of the pack.

It should be noted that Android apps were more affected by fraud than iOS applications, although the latter are comparatively more vulnerable to click flooding. Click flooding or spam was considered to be a major concern for gaming, where nearly two-thirds of fraudulent installs were linked to this. Click flooding is a type of ad fraud where cybercriminals send a large number of clicks in an attempt to get the last click and steal ad spend from app sellers.

“The focus of smaller apps should be primarily on bots (which make up the vast majority of fraud for apps with low install volumes), while larger apps should focus their attention on preventing click flooding. ”, he added.

The food and beverage sector suffered heavily from mobile ad fraud with a fraud rate of 37.43 percent, followed by travel, entertainment, and finance. The report notes that Indian app users who continue to use apps that serve ads had a higher retention rate. These consumers are called remarketing users.

According to the report, the likelihood of a 30-day retention rate for remarketed users was found to be 63% higher than for non-remarketed users. According to AppFlyer, a higher retention rate was seen among remarketing users in the entertainment category compared to the non-remarketing install base.


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