The Rise of Mark Mustermann and Fake Profiles

Mark Mustermann, the e-commerce muffin man, is an infamous spam bot that creates multiple profiles and targets Shopify and Klaviyo accounts. While the intentionality of Mark Mustermann and his fake profiles is unknown, his name has become a staple of the growing issue, with fake profiles bypassing subscription forms, popups, and checkouts.

You can see that Mark Mustermann and his profiles are not hard to detect, especially with email addresses like; however, it highlights a growing trend of fake profiles actively targeting your site. Fake profiles are becoming more common and harder to detect, with most fake accounts passing the “eye” test, as individuals use these accounts to enter raffles, redeem first-time buyer coupons, or spam customer support.

These fake profiles create a significant threat and challenge for brands because often they are used for nefarious activities (e.g., discount code abuse or serial returners), inflate the costs of your tools (e.g., Klaviyo), and skew critical data used for decision making. For example, individuals will use bots with fake accounts to spam abandoned cart flows to receive discounts to incentive purchases from people with items in their cart.

Fortunately, Mark Mustermann and his army of profiles do not check out the item or redeem the potential coupon from these signups and abandon cart flows. However, that is not the case for many other bots and resellers who are taking advantage of brands by using these loopholes to create arbitrage opportunities to profit by selling items on Amazon, Walmart, or other third-party sites.

Beyond abusing discount and return policies, these fake profiles significantly skew your data and inflate the costs of your tools. For example, Klaviyo uses Active Profiles and Emails Sent as their charging metrics. The more accounts, the higher the Klaviyo — this also applies to Mailchimp, Attentive, Postscript, Yopto, and all usage-based software. However, the largest impact is that these fake accounts significantly skew the data you use to understand your customer and decision-making.

This leads to incorrect analysis and conclusions about customer behavior or ineffective marketing campaigns, as the data is skewed by reflecting fake profiles and real customers. It impacts your marketing metrics, inventory and sales forecasting, personalization, and anything that uses data for making decisions. By identifying and removing fake profiles, brands can improve the accuracy of their data, save costs on their tools, and enhance the customer experience.

We specialize in detecting bots, bad actors, and fake accounts and understand their large impact on brands: abusing policies, skewing data, and disturbing the customer experience. Yofi has helped our customers save millions of dollars by preventing bots and bad actors and identified millions of fake accounts, providing overnight cost savings for our customers. We offer a free pilot and audit of your Shopify and Klaviyo accounts to recognize fake, prevent bad actors, and ensure a clean dataset with individualized recommendations.