TripAdvisor In Trouble Again

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The popular review site – TripAdvisor is in the news again in the UK.  Only recently it was told that it could no longer claim that ’all it’s reviews are real’ and that they only have ’reviews that you can trust’.  The ruling came in reponse to an investigation into the UK version of the site by the Advertising Standards Authority.  Their investigation concluded that there was no way that the site could guarantee that it’s reviews were all genuine.  

The site has always struggled with fake reviews, partly because the site has no verification of individual members identity.  Anyone who wishes to post fake reviews can do so easily, they can easily create multiple false account names.

A writer on the popular security blog – http://www.onlineanonymity.org/ commented.

’The site has no way of ensuring the reviews are genuine or even written by real people.  Already several legal cases have taken place after investigations of false reviews placed by people with ulterior motives.  There are many anonymity tools which people could use to prevent even these investigations, a secure VPN run over the anonymity network Tor would evade all the web sites verification systems.

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