Bots are to web traffic what broken turnstiles are to amusement parks – they make it impossible to get an accurate read on how many people are coming through the door, and that messes with optimization.
But at least in the case of a physical location, the visitors are human.
On Thursday, bot detection company Distil Networks announced it had closed its acquisition of Are You A Human, a Detroit-based digital security and human traffic verification company, in a bid to help publishers and websites rid their properties of bots without killing the experience for real users.
Distil declined to disclose the deal price of an acquisition that has all the markings of a classic acqui-hire. All 10 of Are You A Human’s employees will join Distil’s 200, and Distil will open an office in Detroit with plans to hire more engineering talent.
“We have data on who is a bot and who is not on more than 1 million sites,” said Reid Tatoris, Are You A Human’s co-founder and chief product officer, whose new title is still being ironed out.
“We’re combining that with Distil’s bot data so sites can have one version of the truth. That is the main purpose of the acquisition.”