The explosive growth in online commerce has resulted in more people searching for brands and trademarks than ever before. While this is good news for a brand, it comes with the darker side of traffic diversion as well. At a top level, traffic diverters develop content, ads, and mobile apps aimed at diverting shoppers away from normal, authorized online sales channels.

A few common scenarios are as follows:

Fake Comparison/Review Sites  Many shoppers extensively research products and brands before they buy and are hungry for authoritative sites that appear to offer legitimate comparisons or reviews. Frequently, the site will compare several competing brands but conclude that one is far superior and will offer to link the visitor to specific websites where they can make a purchase. Often these sites are setup by rogue competitors (or their affiliates/online retailers). The sites and are simply an effective way to divert a brand’s sales away from authorized sales channels.

Pay Per Click (PPC) Ads – In this scheme, traffic diverters run ads that appear when people search for a specific brand or major product name. Often, they will cite purported discounts of 70% off or more to entice the searcher to click.   Once the traffic is diverted, the odds are low that the shopper will ever return to legitimate sales channels to make a purchase. Many companies mistakenly believe PPC ads are not a problem because they never see them. However, it is very simple to control both the timing of the ad and the geographic regions where it will show. Thus, only an inexperienced traffic diverter would run ads where the company would likely find them.

Rogue Mobile Apps – Rogue mobile apps are a relatively new entrant to the world of cyber crime. Nonetheless, these apps exploding because of many brands do not yet know how to police this conduct. To make matters worse, apps are often included in popular mobile app stores.   Developers of these rogue apps are bold enough to utilize a company’s name and logo without permission – leaving the consumer with the mistaken impression that their apps are brand-sponsored. Oftentimes, the apps offer substantial discounts not intended by the brand – or in the worst cases – maliciously steal user financial information for later exploitation. Either way, the legitimate brand’s reputation is tarnished in the eyes of the consumer.

At E-Enforce, we understand these illegal tactics and have developed E-Triad systems that enable brands to quickly and efficiently eradicate these offenders. Our technology solutions go far beyond finding large volumes of raw brand mentions and then asking attorneys to scan through them. Instead, we have developed specialized technology, couple with trained analyst review, that produces list of probable infringement events that can be cost-effectively reviewed by a licensed attorney.




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