Botnet steals millions of dollars from advertisers

A network of thousands of computers stealing millions of dollars from advertisers by generating fake advert viewings has been discovered. British web analytics firm claims the "Chameleon" botnet is made up of 120,000 home PCs and costs advertisers $6m (£3.9m) per month. said that Chameleon simulated clicks on adverts on over 200 sites. The firm said the botnet was responsible for up to nine billion false ad views every month.
Websites that show display ad receive money when an ad is viewed, in what is called cost-per-impression advertising. It works by money being paid when an ad impression is viewed, and advertisers selling a product or a service pay the website owner a fixed amount each time their ad is viewed.
The ads are typically placed by advertising networks that act as middlemen – the network places the ad on the publisher’s site and the advertiser pays the network and the publisher.