The Competition Bureau set a precedence this week by fining BCE Inc. $1.25 million, after it was revealed that employees within the company were leaving fraudulent reviews for “MyBellMobile” and other applications found in the Apple AppStore.
Even though the fine may come as a surprise to many, fraudulent reviews are actually becoming more prevalent in corporate environments like Bell, where high level executives are expected to be well-versed on ethical business practices.
In 2010, The Better Business Bureau was exposed by ABC news for giving good grades to companies who had negative reputations but paid money for BBB accreditation. The company was forced to close several of its chapters due to accusations of corruption and fraud. We also discussed the relevance of the Better Business Bureau and why customers and businesses alike need to be mindful to gather information from a number of sources before making certain decisions. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/can-you-trust-better-business-bureau-max-sheppar
TrustedPros regularly flags suspicious submissions it receives and alerts the Competition Bureau about the possibility of contractors posting reviews to show their companies in a favorable light. Corporations have a greater responsibly however, than a jerk pretending to be a handy man and does a sloppy job installing tiles in your basement. Corporations are often responsible for providing services to millions of consumers who trust them to be ethical in all their dealings.
Perhaps this penalty imposed by the Competition Bureau was meant to send a clear message to corporations that fraudulent reviews will not be tolerated, as they prevent consumers from making informed decisions based on factual experiences of their fellow consumers. Furthermore, there were hardly any gray areas in this particular situation as bias and subjectivity were painfully obvious. The Bell employees gave stellar reviews of an otherwise poorly received App that users rated an average of 1.5 out of 5 stars.
TrustedPros identified the need for honesty and transparency within the review world as they witnessed countless cases of homeowners being duped by contractors with fake reviews. The TrustScore system, https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/trustscore-launched-protect-homeowners-from-shady-max-sheppard, was developed specifically for the purpose of empowering consumers to make informed decisions 100% of the time.
Like most large corporations that are accused of wrong doing by an independent watch-dog, BCE has agreed to correct its indiscretions and educate its employees about the importance of acting with integrity. Bell has recently removed the fake reviews leaving an accurate assessment of the Apps in question.