What happens if businesses misuse the flagging function?

Businesses that misuse our flagging tool damage the trustworthiness of our online review community. We take this very seriously. When necessary, we warn businesses. And if they persist with misuse, we take further action.

What is Trustpilot’s reporting function?

Businesses that have claimed their profile on Trustpilot can log into their business account to flag reviews they believe violate our Guidelines for Reviewers. All businesses can use this function, regardless of whether they subscribe to our free or paid services.

Flagged reviews are assessed by our Content Integrity Team. Depending on the outcome of their investigation, the review will stay online or be removed.

What is misuse of the reporting function?

Activities that we consider misuse include, but aren't limited to:

Flagging negative reviews only

Example: The PR Manager for Company A logs into their Trustpilot Business account and flags all the 1-star reviews of Company A that contain personal information such as names or email addresses. However, the PR Manager does NOT flag 4- or 5-star reviews that also contravene the guidelines in exactly the same way.

Repeatedly flagging reviews that comply with our guidelines

Example: The director of Company B repeatedly flags the worst reviews about their business, even though the reviews don't actually contravene the guidelines. The director is simply trying to get these reviews removed.

Flagging a competitor’s positive reviews

Example: An employee of Company C finds their main competitor's profile page on Trustpilot and flags positive reviews of that business so that these are investigated. Company C’s employee simply wants to damage the rival business’s reputation and lower its star ratings and TrustScore.

How do we detect misuse?

We have advanced software that scans our platform for abuse of our flagging function. We also investigate every report of misuse submitted via our whistleblower function.

What do we do when we detect misuse?

We consider the behavior outlined above as damaging to our online review community. We also deem it a breach of our Guidelines for Businesses and Terms & Conditions (US, UK).

If we detect such behavior, we'll send a warning to the business where we explain the problem and ask them to stop. If they continue the behavior, we'll take further action such as placing a Consumer Warning on their Trustpilot profile page, limiting access to their business account and, if necessary, taking disciplinary action including terminating any contract they have with us.

Read more in our Action We Take policy.