In the course of the investigation, representatives of the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) revealed more than 100 ads on eBay and 26 ads on Facebook from companies offering fake reviews for sale.
According to the regulator, “there is a thriving marketplace for fake and misleading online reviews.”
Caroline Normand, Director of Consumer Rights Protection at the Which? Group, warned that the situation was worsening and called for urgent action to resolve this problem.
“Writing or commissioning fake or incentivised reviews is in breach of consumer law and can lead to criminal action for the individuals responsible,” she said.
Considering that more than half of online shoppers rely on reviews when making a purchase, custom reviews can bring huge profits to companies.
Both Facebook and eBay have confirmed their willingness to cooperate with CMA.
An eBay spokesman said: “We have informed the CMA that all of the sellers they identified have been suspended.”
Facebook said: “Fraudulent activity is not allowed on Facebook, including the trading of fake reviews.
To combat fraud, the Facebook team has expanded its staff to 30,000 people. Thus, the company intends to prevent any abuse of the platform.
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