What are ‘bots’ and what is the risk?

A bot, simply put, is a program that runs simple and repetitive automated tasks over the internet to do things quickly and at scale. Bots operate at a higher rate of speed than humans, so they can accomplish many tasks in a very short time. Bots make up nearly half of all web traffic (48.5%), and of that half, 66% are considered malicious bots. To ensure the safety of your sweepstakes, and business, many precautions are taken.

Focusing on user experience for (human) traffic.

Generally, the way to protect against bots is by using a CAPTCHA (or a Completely Automated Public Turing Test to Tell Computers and Humans Apart). A CAPTCHA is a program that generates and grades tests that humans can pass but computer programs cannot. Although CAPTCHA works well at preventing bots, it tends to impede and frustrate the overall user experience and can be beat by sophisticated bots and CAPTCHA solving services. Due to the negative experience to human users, and company risk, there has been much debate about the most efficient way to ensure that bots are not being counted as people.

Finding the balance of security and user experience

According to a study done by Distil Networks, the global leader in bot detection and mitigation, ‘…when a CAPTCHA was present, people were on average 12% less likely to continue on to the content they had come to access, for both desktop and mobile’. At Realtime Media we want visitors to your promotion to have the best experience possible, which is why we offer the Distil Bot Defense Platform. The Distil Bot Defense Platform ensures that all traffic coming to your promotion is from real people who are genuinely interested, otherwise the bot cannot access the promotion.

Sweepstakes Bots and Prizing

Winners and prizes are the most important part of a sweepstakes, instant win game, or contest. Malicious bots can seriously impact these digital promotions in a variety of ways such as automating the number of entries into a sweepstakes or having the upper hand in time-seeded instant win game. Here at Realtime Media we make sure that your digital promotion is kept only to real people. If you have any questions about digital promotion security or want to talk about prize strategy, get in touch with us!

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