“According to the CMA, more than half of UK adults not only use online reviews but find them valuable. It’s extremely important to safeguard this consumer trust. We want the industry to do everything in its power to ensure the validity of our collective services,” says UK VP of Trustpilot, James Westlake.
26th August, 2015 – London – Trustpilot, the global reviews community for online businesses, today demonstrates its commitment to combating fraudulent reviews by kick-starting conversations with the rest of the industry to develop an agreed standard that protects both businesses and consumers alike.
A recent Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) report demonstrated the industry-wide problem around fraudulent behaviour, jeopardising the transparency of online reviews. Trustpilot, a company totally committed to its zero tolerance policy toward fraudulent behaviour, has received the support from other well-established online review platforms to create an industry-wide standard. This new working group will reach out to receive consultation and input from the CMA and Trading Standards (TS) as part of this.
Robert Sexton, Head of Regulatory Services at Trading Standards says: “Bracknell Forest Trading Standards have a primary authority relationship with Trustpilot, with whom we have cooperated on detecting fraudulent behaviour and addressing issues related it.
“As online reviews become more important to consumers, there is an increasing incentive to commit fraud, and we support this initiative to discuss and address the challenges the online review industry is facing.”
Investing heavily in its international quality and compliance strategy, Trustpilot employs 35 people to work alongside its bespoke automated detection software to focus on mitigating fraudulent behaviour and ensuring the trustworthiness of its platform. The company has committed to investing a significant amount of its recent $73.5m series D funding to continuing to strengthen this protection strategy.
”The online review industry has expanded rapidly as consumers increasingly look to reviews to inform their shopping decisions. We are at a critical turning point, where the industry should come together and develop a framework to do everything we can to verify genuine online reviews,” emphasises Westlake.
Facts: Countries with guidelines for online reviews
- The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission published its guide for business and review platforms in 2013.
- AFNOR developed a standard to enable reliable processing of online reviews in France in 2013.
- The Danish Consumer Ombudsman published a set of guidelines for online reviews in 2015.
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Founded in 2007 by CEO Peter Holten Mühlmann, Trustpilot is a global, multi-language open review community that builds trust and transparency between consumers and businesses. Currently boasting more than 13 million consumer reviews of 115,000 businesses, Trustpilot produces a TrustScore for businesses based on recent reviews. Every day, more than 10,000 consumers sign up on Trustpilot, and every month, 500.000 new reviews are posted on the community.
Trustpilot has customers in 65 countries and has developed strong positions in Denmark, Sweden, the U.K., France, Italy, Germany and the Netherlands, as well as the U.S. The company is located in New York, London, Copenhagen and Melbourne, and its employee base has increased from 168 people in 2013 to its current count of more than 400 employees representing 40 nationalities.