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The Complete Malvertising Resource Center

Everything you ever wanted to know about malvertising, all in one place.

What is Malvertising?

Malvertising is a malicious attack that impacts legitimate websites when bad actors purchase and submit ads through advertising platforms that appear to be normal, but in fact execute malicious activity when displayed on the publisher site. The ultimate goal of malicious ads is to either inject malware on end user devices or obtain personal information through phishing pages.

Are you a more visual person?

Malvertising Infographic

Check out this infographic to see how malicious ads travel from platform to publisher.

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timeline malicious ad infographic on phone

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Malvertising: What You Need to Know to Prevent It

Malvertising poses a real risk to publishers and platforms alike. This guide explains what malvertising is, what forms it takes, the extent of the risk, and how to prevent it.

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How Does Malvertising Affect You?

Malvertising affects every part of the digital advertising chain differently. From platforms to publishers, and all the way down to the end user who may have been the victim of a malvertising attack, everyone is affected.


As a website publisher, you are responsible for the experience users have on your website. Malveritising, while it may originate from the advertising platforms you use, still strongly affects your brand reputation. Protecting your users (and not to mention their engagement metrics) protects your brand and improves your revenue.

Some resource that may be most useful to you include:

Anti-Malvertising ROI: What is the Real Cost of Malvertising?

Learn more about how malvertising tends to affect revenue and create costs for publishers, so you can consider how they apply to your organization.

Anti-Malvertising Solutions: Creative Wrapping vs. Page-Level Protection

Learn more about the methods anti-malvertising solutions offer for integrating their tools onto your website: creative wrapping and page-level scripts.


As a platform, the publishers you serve depend on you to provide them with quality ads. Stopping malvertising at the source, as fast as you can, helps you to protect every member of the ecosystem downstream from you and preserve your own reputation as a quality platform.

Some resource that may be most useful to you include:

New Partnership With Index Exchange Will Expand Malvertising Protection for Publishers and Consumers

A new partnership between and Index Exchange will further the ad exchange’s commitment to combating malvertising on behalf of publishers and consumers.

[Infographic] A More Effective Method for Platforms to Combat Malvertising

Who is truly responsible for blocking malvertising at the source? Learn more about the variety of options platforms have for stopping malvertisers.

Malvertising Victim

Have you been the victim of a malicious redirect? Concerned that your device may be compromised? This section of our malvertising guide outlines how to protect yourself as a potential victim of malvertising.

Types of Malvertising

Malvertising is an evolving landscape in which bad actors are constantly finding new ways to infiltrate user experiences and profit off your unsuspecting audience. The key to learning how to prevent malvertising is to understand how it is executed, which is why we’ve created this series of blogs to provide an overview of the different attack types and delivery methods.

Malicious Ads: 5 Different Attack Types to Know About in 2020

Learn more about the 5 most common methods by which bad actors execute malicious attacks through ads.

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Malicious Ads: 3 Different Attack Delivery Methods to Know About in 2020

Learn more about the different methods employed by malvertisers to get their malicious code to the place where it executes.

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Malvertising Examples

Examples of malvertising in action can help to illustrate the problems it can cause and allow you to more deeply understand the various different types of attacks.

Protect Your Q4 Revenue from the Dreaded Q4 Malvertising Spike

Q4 advertising revenue is always the most revenue-producing quarter of the year. Learn more about why and how you can protect that revenue from the Q4 spike in malvertising.

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New cleanAD Feature Announcement: Now Blocking Cloaking Attacks

See examples of cloaking attacks and learn more about how we have expanded the cleanAD feature set to protect publishers from cloaking attacks.

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Malvertising Prevention

There are various methods on the market for combatting malvertising. Understanding the differences between the options, and comparing how they work can help you select the right approach for your needs.

How to Remove Malvertising: 3 Options for Combating Malvertising

Many sites will get attacked by malware (or bad ads) at some point. Learn your options for preventing malvertising and how to best shore up your defenses from unwanted ads.

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Is Your Malvertising Prevention Strategy Working?

Read or watch the recorded webinar for insights from Seth Demsey, cofounder of, as to why the average malvertising prevention strategy does not work.

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Anti-Malvertising Solutions: Creative Wrapping vs. Page-Level Protection

Learn more about the methods anti-malvertising solutions offer for integrating their tools onto your website: creative wrapping and page-level scripts.

Read More →

Using Behavioral Analysis to Stop Malvertising

This article will help you understand the three different categories of tools used to fight malvertising, how they work, as well how effective they are.

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Malvertising Statistics and Data

Like to geek out on statistics and data about malvertising? (We do too!) We’ve got plenty of that to go around.


Check out Our Quarterly SMART Report

The SMART Report, released once per quarter offers a deep dive into malvertising data and statistics collected across the entire cleanAD network.

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Q3 2020 SMART Report

How Many Paths Are There From Malvertiser to Publisher?

The complexity of the digital advertising ecosystem works to the advantage of malvertisers. Learn how publishers can pinpoint the weak link in the chain.

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Weekend vs. Weekday Attack Patterns

In this article we went straight to the data to find out what malvertising attack trends look like by day of the week. Here's what we learned.

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Common Malvertising FAQs

cleanAD for Malvertising


Learn How PubPlus Eliminated 3% Gross Monthly Revenue Loss Due to Malvertising with cleanAD

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Learn How cleanAD Completely Eliminated Malicious Redirects, Freeing up 60 Hours of AdOps Efforts per Week, for Venatus Media

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Learn How VPP Gaming Network Rebuilt their Reputation After Losing 46.4% Player Reach Due To Malicious Ad Attacks

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