When it comes to releases on SNKRS, the general assumption is that bots (usually controlled by resellers) dominate access, shutting out sneaker collectors with good intentions. In reality, SNKRS launches are protected against bots in many ways. To clarify how bot protection works during a SNKRS launch, we’ve added a screen to our launch experience outlining when and how we remove bots and validate entries. We’re rolling this out over the coming months–if you don’t see it now, you will soon. Our intent with this screen, and the information below, is to give members more context around bots and how SNKRS launches are protected from them.
What is a bot?
Bots are automated programs that fake real consumer activity, primarily to join launches and purchase products with the intent to resell.
How are SNKRS launches protected against bots?
Nike uses a variety of tools to identify and remove bots from the SNKRS platform including advanced analytics and machine learning to verify that users and entries are authentic. There is a team of Nike engineers dedicated to dismantling bots designed to game launches. We take bot protection extremely seriously, and critically evaluate launches both in real time, and retroactively, to evolve our defenses and remain a step ahead of bot developers.
Is this protection new for SNKRS?
No, it’s not. Nike and SNKRS have been defending launches against bots for about seven years, with significant accuracy and success. We have added new messaging within the launch process on SNKRS as part of an effort to provide more transparency about how we validate entries. We have also taken measures within our Terms of Sale to address those who are leveraging bots and protect authentic users.
How many bots are identified and removed?
Depending on the popularity of a launch, bot attacks can make up about 10%-50% of all entries. Every month, Nike stops as many as 12 billion bot calls attempting to game SNKRS launches globally, and actively identifies accounts exhibiting bot activity during every launch.
Does Nike remove all bots?
Nike removes the majority of bots from launches, with especially aggressive defenses focused on our most popular launches. Bot innovation is constantly evolving, so it is possible that a small fraction of bot entries may be successful for any given launch. We remain on the offensive daily to ensure that our technology and tactics stay ahead of the game and verified, authentic community members have fair access to launches.
If launches are protected from bots, why don’t I see more W’s?
SNKRS features Nike's most coveted drops, and demand often greatly outweighs supply. Various factors impact how many pairs Nike makes of a given sneaker, but the goal is always the same: making sure our most popular product goes to real fans.