Q: What is a fake review?
A fake review is a fraudulent or deceptive review that is posted with the intent to manipulate the reputation or perception of a product, service or individual. Fake reviews are typically either positive (5-star) or negative (1-star).
Q: Who writes fake reviews?
Fake positive reviews are usually written by the staff or management of a business, or by one of their agents (PR firms, reputation management companies, importers etc). Fake negatives are typically written by competitors, disgruntled employees, trolls, activists or bad actors.
Q: Why do people write fake reviews?
Positive fake reviews are usually written by a business to gain a competitive edge over their rivals and are intended to attract more customers and influence purchase behaviour. Fake negatives are written by rivals or disgruntled employees. With the moral and legal landscape changing, the consequences for a business of being caught having deceived their customers with fake reviews are becoming ever-more serious.
Q: How do fake reviewers operate?
Fake reviewers employ various tactics, including creating burner accounts or fictitious identities to post reviews. Increasingly their reviews are automatically written using bots or generative AI. This allows them to generate significant volumes of bogus reviews in a short period of time, known as "review bombing,". Other techniques include planting fake reviews among genuine ones, which is known as “salting”,
Q: How does the TruthEngine® detect fake reviews?
The TruthEngine® is a state-of-the-art fake review detection system that uses advanced algorithms and artificial intelligence to identify fraudulent reviews. It analyses patterns, language, timing, and other factors to detect suspicious content. Our system cross-references reviews from multiple platforms to ensure authenticity.
Q: Can the TruthEngine® identify anonymous fake reviews?
Yes, the TruthEngine® can identify fake reviews posted by anonymous or pseudonymous accounts. We use various, cutting-edge techniques to trace the commonalities and fingerprints of fake reviews. Anonymous reviews are substantially more likely to be fake.
Q: If the TruthEngine® detects fake reviews for a business, what happens next?
Businesses whose reviews are found to contain a percentage of fake reviews (either positive, left for example by well-meaning staff or negatives left by rivals) are provided with a detailed report of the findings. They can choose to remove the fake content themselves or request our assistance. Businesses whose reviews pass our strict authenticity tests earn the TruthMark® certification to display on their platforms.
Q: Is TruthEngine® compatible with all review platforms?
Yes, TruthEngine® is compatible with all major review platforms, including Amazon, Apple, Google, TripAdvisor, TrustPilot, and more. Our cross-platform compatibility ensures comprehensive fake review detection.
Q: What are the consequences for businesses found to have fake reviews?
Businesses with identified fake reviews can face substantial reputational damage and consumer trust issues. Additionally, they may incur penalties, warnings, or legal actions if they engaged in fraudulent practices. In the UK, businesses caught faking their reviews stand liable for a fine of up to 10% of their global turnover under the upcoming 2024 Digital Markets Competition and Consumers Act.
Q: How can businesses protect themselves from fake reviews?
Businesses can protect themselves by proactively and diligently monitoring their online presence regularly throughout the day, reporting and flagging suspicious reviews, encouraging customers to leave genuine feedback, and providing excellent customer service to minimize negative reviews. Alternatively, businesses can use the TruthEngine® to automate the process and we will algorithmically analyse every review being left for your business on every major review platform every 20 minutes, checking them for authenticity and protecting your business from the negative effects of being neg-bombed by rivals and from the PR and financial ramifications of being caught with fake reviews.
Q: What is "review bombing," and how does TruthEngine® detect it?
Review bombing is the act of posting a large number of negative reviews to harm a product or business's reputation. The TruthEngine® detects review bombing through real-time analysis of review timing, language, and patterns, flagging, alerting and protecting our customers from this harmful activity.
Q: Does the TruthEngine® work internationally?
Yes. The TruthEngine® is designed to work internationally and is not limited to specific regions, products or platforms. It supports the 11 most-spoken languages on Earth. We detect fake reviews on a global scale.
Q: Is the TruthEngine® a browser plugin?
No, the TruthEngine® works on our dedicated state of the art server infrastructure and analyses multiple millions of reviews on behalf of major brands. We work with them and the platforms which host their reviews to ensure that their reviews are legitimate, authentic and reliable. Businesses whose reviews pass our rigorous authenticity standards can display the TruthMark®, a clear and powerful symbol of compliance and brand integrity.
Q: Are there any specific industries or platforms where fake reviews are more prevalent?
Yes, fake reviews can be more prevalent in specific industries like hospitality, healthcare, and tech. Platforms that rely heavily on user reviews, such as Amazon, Google and Yelp, often see a higher occurrence of fake reviews.
Q: How can businesses proactively prevent fake reviews from being posted about their products or services?
To prevent fake reviews harming their reputation and eroding their consumer trust, businesses can use the TruthEngine® to monitor the authenticity of their online reputation in real-time. TruthEngine® customers get to showcase their integrity by displaying the TruthMark® and can immediately prove to regulators and the public that their reviews are both trustworthy and legally compliant.