Google wants to assure advertisers -- who help float its revenue boat -- that their ads are actually reaching their target audiences. To further that mission, it said Friday, it has acquired a company called Spider.io.
Spider.io, which was founded just three years ago, provides a fraud-fighting service aimed at ensuring the accuracy of advertising metrics. Google didn't disclose the terms of the deal, but said that it plans to integrate Spider.io's service into Google's display and video ads immediately. Google will then build out Spider.io's platform to improve the general understanding of the people advertisers are targeting.
The issue for Google and advertisers is that it's not so easy to weed out so-called "bad actors" -- bots that act as users, but are only driving up revenues on sites that don't deserve it. Ultimately, Google wants to make as iron-clad as possible the relationship between the metrics it provides to advertisers and the actual number of people who are viewing its ads -- a task that might prove more difficult than one might think.