Hiding Google AdSense in iFrames

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Hiding Google AdSense in iFrames

I’m not sure if this is a surefire way to get a site booted from Google AdSense or not, but Hari K Gottipati, a Software Engineer with Motorola Inc (according to his blog) has figured out a way to earn Google AdSense Page Impressions without displying the Google AdSense ads.

This weekend I was working on some thing where I needed to hide iframe based on some action. I figured it out putting the iframe inside div tag and hiding the div tag is very easy. And then I realised that Google adsense uses iframe to display the ads and wanted to see how Google prevents me fectching the ads into a hidden iframe.

Hari says that there is no way for Google to determine whether or not the iframe is hidden because he is using a div wrapper around the iframe.

Hari adds:

Each time a visitor visits a page with an AdSense tag, a piece of JavaScript writes an iframe tag which displays the text or image ads. If you put the Google adsense script inside a div tag and if you hide the div tag, users won’t even notice the Google ads. But it actually loads the ads from Google servers into the iframe. It only works with page impression option, because Google count the number of impressions each time you load the ads into iframe.

I don’t think Google has the mechanism to check whether the user is displaying the ads that loaded from Google server or not. Its very difficult for Google to determine this case as iframe itself is not hidden, it is used inside div tag which is hidden.

Just how much could a site make by hiding its AdSense ads so no one clicks on them? I’d imagine that the CPM Impression money would be merely cents and the return on investment would be in the negative, as Google would lay the wrath of God down on publishers for doing so.

I do however believe that Hari is testing this hidden iframe just for fun and he has a nice “now you see it, now you don’t” example on his young blog, Me, My tech watch & My tech thoughts.

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Loren Baker
Loren Baker is the Founder of SEJ, an Advisor at Alpha Brand Media and runs Foundation Digital, a digital marketing strategy & development agency.
Loren Baker
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