February 28, 2022 News

Online advertising on IPR-Infringing Websites and Apps 2021 Study


Internet websites and mobile applications that provide access to content, goods or services that infringe intellectual property rights (IPR) on a commercial scale use the sale of advertising space as one of their revenue sources. In addition to providing a revenue stream to IPR infringers, the presence of advertising for legitimate brands on websites and mobile applications that infringe IPR can confuse consumers. The study looks at online advertising found on IPR infringing websites and mobile apps during 2021, evaluates the estimated amount and type of such advertising, and estimates the associated ad revenues. The total worldwide revenue generated by the monitored website was estimated at EUR 912.7 million, while the worldwide revenue generated by the monitored apps was EUR 57.1 million.

These figures highlight a serious issue, namely that websites and apps that infringe IPR do not only derive revenue from their infringing activities, but also from advertising by legitimate brands that is placed on such websites unwittingly, partly as a result of the very complex internet advertising ecosystem.