What is Skewing?
With skewing attacks, attackers seek to falsify (or skew) web analysis data, such as from Google Analytics. The attack does not consist of data theft but automated queries by bots instead. The objective is to entice the targeted company to make wrong business decisions.
How Does Skewing Occur?
Attackers use bots and drive up the number of visitors on certain pages—such as a specific product page—with automated inquiries. The web analysis tool registers the high numbers of clicks, and the website operator concludes that there is a lot of interest in this product. If, on the basis of this skewed analytical data, marketing decisions are made and advertising budgets planned, for instance, this will result in a lot of money being poorly invested.
What Are the Consequences of Skewing?
An attack always harms affected companies and institutions, regardless of which method is chosen. Victim organizations still suffer from the consequences even years later. It is therefore extremely important to have effective protection.
Poor business decisions based on distorted analysis data quickly waste large marketing and advertising budgets. A considerable drop in sales may result as well.
Attackers can attempt to distract you from signs of declining customer satisfaction. You will then have too little time to take countermeasures, causing the relationship with your customers to suffer.
If analysis data is falsified, you are no longer able to draw reliable conclusions concerning the success of your online campaigns and the user data is completely useless.
Which Industries Are Affected?
Companies of all industries and sizes that make business decisions based on traffic statistics are affected by skewing, including both e-commerce providers and online media.
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