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Fraud streaming on music streaming services has a huge impact on an artist’s place on that platform and can lead to huge repercussions. Here’s what it is and how to avoid it.

A fraud stream does what it says on the tin: It’s an illegitimate stream that isn’t a real listen (made by a human pressing play) and is therefore fraud. There are a number of ways fraud streams can be made on digital music with the artist’s direct involvement and sometimes without. Whatever the case, it will be picked up by services with repercussions for the artist.

‘Pay for Play’ services

A number of services online promise artists increased streams on their tracks in exchange for payment. What the majority of these services are offering is fraudulent streams on music. This can have devastating results for the artist, whose music can be removed from services as a result.

Be incredibly wary of any services offering a boost to plays. Some of these services will even state in their terms that what they are doing goes completely against service’s terms of service. Falling victim to these scams can lead to losing your streaming revenue, losing your place on streaming services, and potentially even a ban from your distributor.

How to avoid fraud streaming

It is highly unlikely that music will ever be targeted for fraud streaming without the artist’s direct or indirect involvement. As long as you aren’t attempting to fraudulently boost your own streams or paying for services to do it for you, you shouldn’t ever face an issue with fraud streaming.

As streams accumulate revenue for artists and publishers, services take the fraud of them incredibly seriously and will always take action.

For advice on how you can naturally boost your music performance, check out our musician’s blog where we post plenty of advice and tips for artists getting their music out there.