Fake Google Maps business listings are a big problem and a new report claims there’s tens of millions of bogus accounts on the platform…
Fake Google Maps Business Listing Problem Exposed by Recent Report
The problem is so pervasive hundreds of thousands fraudulent accounts pop-up each month. In fact, the Journal estimates there are as many as 11 million bogus listings.
However, a study self-funded by Google puts the number much lower, finding just 0.5 percent of local listings false.
Although, the WSJ’s investigation found 13 of the top 20 search results included fake addresses. Plus, just two of those listings were actual businesses.
Most of businesses aren’t really at their listed locations. The biggest culprits appear to be contractors, repair services, car towing companies, and outright scams.
Though Google does attempt to verify all of its business listings with a snail-mail postcard, a phone call, or via email, the system is quite easy to fool.
Google has since removed the fake business listings discovered by the Journal and states it’s deployed new defenses for high-risk categories.