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How do we handle misuse of our Notify Compliance function by users?

What is Trustpilot’s Notify Compliance function?

Trustpilot users can let us know about reviews that violate our User Guidelines via our 'Notify Compliance' process. Just click on the flag icon underneath a review.

Clicking on the flag icon triggers a pop-up box that asks for a description of the problem. Use this box to describe the alleged violation in detail to assist us in our investigation.

Who monitors our Notify Compliance function?

Trustpilot has a large Compliance Team who safeguards our platform and ensures that we consistently offer high-quality services. They investigate each and every flagged review.

However, users should note that while we’re grateful for the help we receive in checking any unusual activities on our platform, we can’t always provide specific details about how our investigation is proceeding, or our findings about individual reviews. This is because we have to comply with privacy rules.

We do, however, ask users to change their reviews if they breach our User Guidelines or - if it's not possible to bring them within our rules - we move the reviews in question offline.

What is misuse of the Notify Compliance function?

Our Notify Compliance function should only be used where users genuinely believe that a review violates our User Guidelines. Misuse of this function includes (but of course isn’t limited to) the following:

Notifying genuine reviews that comply with our guidelines to get these reviews removed

Example: Trustpilot user ‘Steve’ flags 15 of Company B's 5-star reviews because he's had a bad experience with that company and doesn’t think it deserves a good Trustpilot rating. Steve can’t correctly point to any specific violation of the User Guidelines for each review - he just doesn’t like Company B.

Re-notifying the same review, after it has already been assessed by our Compliance Team and found to meet our User Guidelines

Example: Trustpilot user Steve can see that one of the 5-star reviews for Company B he notified last month is still visible on Trustpilot. After Steve flagged it, the review was investigated by Trustpilot’s Compliance Team who found, correctly, that it didn't contravene the User Guidelines. That’s why it’s back online. Steve doesn’t like Company B, so he flags the review again.

Flagging a competitor domain’s positive reviews

Example: An employee of Company D finds her main competitor's domain on Trustpilot and flags 4 and 5-star reviews of that business so that these are investigated. Company D’s employee simply wants to damage the rival business’s reputation.

What happens if we suspect misuse?

If our Compliance Team detects suspicious patterns in notification behaviour, we investigate and follow up directly with the Trustpilot user involved.

What action do we take against misuse of our Notify Compliance function?

We consider the user behaviour outlined above to be a breach of the User Guidelines that people agree to when signing up to Trustpilot. It's also a material breach of our Terms & Conditions. This means that we take it very seriously.

If we're able to document misuse of our services, our usual process is to send a warning to the user in question to inform them about the problem(s) and request them to stop. If they persist, or the behaviour is particularly severe, our Compliance Team may block access to their account.

Note: Trustpilot also has a whistleblower function. Read about how it works here.



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