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**CONSUMER ALERT** CFO Jimmy Patronis: Beware of Fake Online Reviews


For Immediate Release: Tuesday, November 2, 2021
Contact: Office of Communications,, 850.413.2842
CFO Jimmy Patronis: Beware of Fake Online Reviews 

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis is warning consumers about a recent report that Tripadvisor removed or rejected nearly 1 million fake reviews from its website last year. User-generated online reviews have become essential sources of information for potential consumers before making a purchase. In October, the Federal Trade Commission put hundreds of businesses on notice about fake reviews and other misleading endorsements that deceive consumers.
CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “If Tripadvisor removed nearly 1 million fake reviews last year, there’s no telling how many bogus reviews are still out there being used to trick Florida consumers. Every day, consumers go online to research reviews to determine if a product or service is best for them. Whether it’s on Amazon before you buy a product, Tripadvisor before you book a trip, or on a daycare’s website before you enroll your child, consumer reviews can be very persuasive and it’s a shame that people are infiltrating sites with phony information. These fake reviews can harm businesses and mislead consumers, opening the door for fraud and scams. Always remember to do your research and if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
Three Tips to Spot Fake Reviews
• Look at the Dates of the Reviews. If there are many reviews in a short period of time, it can be an indication that the reviews are fake, especially if they’re obviously favorable or negative towards a specific product or business.

• Check Out Other Reviews. On sites like Amazon, Yelp or TripAdvisor, take a look at the user’s profile and read other reviews that they’ve posted.

• If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. When leaving an honest review, most customers aren’t overly positive or negative. They could have a good experience, but still have criticism on one aspect. If it sounds like the best or worst thing that’s ever been sold, there’s room to be skeptical.
About CFO Jimmy Patronis 
Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide elected official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).