BI Intelligence See Also Amazon rolls out monetization tools for Alexa skills Google's new app targets emerging markets THE MOBILE CARRIER LANDSCAPE: How AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint are overcoming slow user growth amid a fierce price war This story was delivered to BI Intelligence "Digital Media Briefing" subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here. Google’s adoption of ads.txt, a piece of code that lets advertisers authorize certain ad exchanges to sell their inventory, has helped minimize online ad fraud, according to The Wall Street Journal. Counterfeit, or "spoofed," ad space refers to fraudulent ad inventory with minimal traffic that's disguised as premium ad space. Advertisers can be duped into paying for the phony inventory because it's not clear that the party selling it isn't authorized to do so on programmatic ad exchanges. The average price of online ad inventory purchased through Google’s ad-buying platforms has increased over the past three weeks, indicating that Google's fight against ad fraud is starting to work. The company attributes this jump to its adoption of ads.txt, which inhibits fraudsters from listing and selling spoofed ad inventory and therefore increases the value of legitimate advertisers’ ad inventory.  The increase in average prices of online ad inventory is promising for players in the digital ad ecosystem: Earlier this year, Google found that ad fraud was a widespread problem for major media companies. The company found “thousands if not millions” of video and display spots from companies including NBCU, CBS and The New York Times listed for sale on multiple ad exchanges after these companies turned off their programmatic inventory for 15 minutes. This means unauthorized websites were fraudulently selling the ad inventory. Ad fraud is expected to contribute to great financial losses to advertisers in 2017.Advertisers are estimated to lose $6.5 billion in ad spend in 2017 due to fraud, according to a report by White Ops and the Association of National Advertisers. However, this figure is down 10% from the estimated $7.2 billion lost to ad fraud in 2016, pointing to the success of industry initiatives