Knowledge Base      

What are Flagged Clicks?

There are 6 types of “suspicious” or potentially bad clicks you might want processed differently as compared to regular clicks from real people surfing the web normally.

And for each of them, you can tell ClickMagick to “flag” the clicks, block the clicks, or do nothing special with the clicks and process them normally.

You can choose these settings in the Advanced Settings of any link or rotator.

But before continuing, you need to be absolutely clear on how flagged and blocked clicks are processed, or you may choose incorrect settings for the 6 types of potentially “bad” clicks.

Please read (or re-read) this article on the topic:

What’s the difference between click flagging and blocking?

If you are using Campaigns, please read the article below:

How does Campaigns help combat bots and click fraud?

Now that you’re an expert on flagged clicks and blocked clicks and how they affect your statistics, let’s take a look at the 6 different types of potentially “bad” clicks.

Note: Please notice that 5 out of the 6 can be generated by real humans, so don’t assume when looking at your Flagged or Blocked clicks that you’re always looking at non-human clicks 100% of the time!
Abuser    An “Abuser” is a web surfer who has exhibited abnormal and highly suspicious click patterns, for example loading the same tracking link 30 times in one minute or clicking 30 different tracking links in one minute.

If you are a “solo ad” seller, you’ll want to read the following article on how you should handle clicks from “Abusers”:

Can you explain in more detail what an "Abuser" is?

Because “Abusers” are actual people, ClickMagick processes these clicks normally—by default—and does NOT flag or block these clicks. It’s up to you to decide how to handle them.

Generally speaking, though, we recommend that you do set Abusers to the “Flag” or “Block” setting, especially if you’re selling solo ads.
Anon   Anonymous refers to users who are hiding behind an anonymous proxy, Virtual Private Network, TOR, etc.

And more often than not they are people who are trying to artificially inflate your click counts, as the overwhelming majority of Internet users do NOT fall into this category.

But because “Anon” clicks ARE from real people, ClickMagick does NOT flag or block these clicks by default. It’s up to you how you want to handle them.

If you want to flag or block anonymous clicks—which is generally recommended for solo ad sellers—you can do this in the Advance Settings of your link or rotator.
Bot   A bot is any type of automated program or software that accesses your tracking links or rotators.

Bots can be both innocent like a link monitoring system, or malicious like a script used to generate fake clicks. Either way they mess up your stats.

By default, ClickMagick will flag bot clicks and separate them from your stats automatically – but please note that in a relatively tiny percentage of cases bot clicks can also come from machines used by real humans.

For example, if a user’s home computer is infected with malware or is part of a “bot net”, this user’s machine will generate “bot” clicks – and if you flag or block these clicks you would also be flagging or blocking any legitimate clicks from the user themselves.

The odds of this happening are so small that it’s not really something you have to worry about, but it’s certainly something that you should be aware of.
Spider   spider is a piece of code that search engines use to index the web, following links in pages as they find them during the indexing process. These spider “clicks” are generally innocent, but they don’t represent real clicks from real users and they mess up your stats.

By default, ClickMagick will flag spider clicks from your stats automatically.
Server   This represents a “click” from a known web server or hosting company. The overwhelming majority of the time these are scripts used by scammers to generate fake clicks.

By default, ClickMagick will flag “server” clicks from your stats automatically – but please note that in a relatively tiny percentage of cases server clicks can also come from machines used by humans.

For example, if a person has used a web server to set up their own VPN (virtual private network) to surf the web anonymously, these legitimate human clicks could be identified as “server” clicks instead.

The percentage of people who do this type of thing are so tiny that it’s not really something you have to worry about, but it’s certainly something that you should be aware of.
User   These are the IPs or IP ranges that you, the user, have manually added on your IP Manager page.

By default, ClickMagick will flag these clicks automatically.
Note: VPN requests originate from a server, so if our system hasn’t yet learned about a particular VPN IP address, the click will be classified as a Server click instead. While this occasionally does occur, it’s quite rare –and most importantly – it doesn’t happen often enough to meaningfully affect the accuracy of your stats.

In addition to our own systems, ClickMagick uses the most accurate 3rd-party IP databases available, and our system gets smarter at detecting VPN IPs every day … but if you find that a VPN is being classified as a Server you’re welcome to let us know and we’ll investigate and update our database if necessary.

Now, for each type of potentially bad clicks described above, you have 3 choices of what to do with them:
1.    Flag – Flagging will send these clicks through your link or rotator as normal, but their clicks counts will be separated from your main stats. You can view these clicks any time by clicking on the number in the FC column.

Clicks from “Abusers” are flagged for 24 hours after their last abusive click. All other types of clicks are flagged indefinitely.
2.    Block – This will block the click from being processed, and the “click” will be sent to a generic error page. You can view blocked clicks on the Public Stats page of any link, or the Shared Stats page of any rotator URL.
Note: Be aware that even if you set your Bot settings to Block, ClickMagick can’t block critical bots from major companies like AWeber, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, etc. or their link verification tests will fail and cause you massive problems. When ClickMagick sees these special bots, they are flagged instead of being completely blocked. 
3.    Nothing – Don’t do anything out of the ordinary. Treat these clicks just the same as real clicks.

You can choose whether to flag or block or these clicks using the “Bad Clicks” settings in the Advanced Settings of each tracking link or rotator.

You can also specify default settings in the “Click Auditing” section of your Account Settings which will be used whenever you create a new tracking link or rotator.
Caution: Most other click tracking systems do NOT differentiate clicks from real people and clicks from bots, search engine spiders, anti-virus programs, link monitoring systems, etc.

If you’re comparing what you see in your ClickMagick account with the stats from another tracking system, you can see some major discrepancies if the other system treats these fake clicks as “real” clicks.

Article 632 Last updated: 07/26/2021 7:18:37 AM