Gumtree is the UK’s leading classifieds platform, with around over 1 million adverts live any one time*. With one in three adults** of the internet-using population in the UK using Gumtree to buy and sell second hand goods and cars, or to find jobs, properties, professional services and community events – we take our responsibilities on trust and safety seriously.
By our very nature as a classifieds platform, Gumtree encourages people to fulfil their transaction in person, offline. And it is offline where crime prevention is one step removed from our platform and is harder for us to prevent.
But make no mistake – we’re determined as ever to keep Gumtree a safe and trusted environment. This is why we work with a range of industry partners, including the Police and Trading Standards, and other law enforcement organisations.
Since transactions aren’t carried out on the site, we have a particularly strong focus on making people safe before the transaction phase. We’ve recently invested in state-of-the-art technology, which:
- Automates the detection and removal of sites that spoof or pretend to be Gumtree
- Identifies fraud patterns, links and trends
- Continually analyses data and updates systems, creating new rules to catch and combat fraudsters
- Automatically updates and maintains blacklisting across a variety of different factors and circumstances
In addition to technological investments, in recent months and years we’ve also introduced a range of measures to make Gumtree a more hostile environment for criminals, including:
- Putting additional resource into our law enforcement liaison capability
- Introducing free and compulsory HPI checks on vehicles
- Revamping our online help centre and safety messaging
Trust and safety is an industry-wide issue, and all companies have a responsibility in not only making people feel safe, but educating them about the risks involved.
In 2018 Gumtree celebrated its 18th birthday, and today we take our responsibilities to our users and business partners more seriously than ever before. One thing is certain: the work of crime prevention and detection is never done and as police and industry crime-fighting capabilities and technologies mature, new approaches will need to be adopted.
Through our close collaborative relationships with law enforcement agencies, Gumtree is continuing to work tirelessly to bolster its crime-fighting capability.
For more information visit out dedicated Help Centre here.
* Over 1 live adverts – Gumtree internal data (Data warehouse) at 22nd April 2017
** comScore, yearly average: dates June 2016 – May 2017