Airbnb says it will verify all 7 million properties to improve trust

Airbnb says it will verify all 7 million properties to improve trust

In a blog post that repeats the word "trust" 17 times, Chesky says Airbnb is launching a program to verify "all seven million listings" on its service-a task that will take more than a year.

In response, Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky said days ago that the company would ban "party houses," while providing little explanation of what, exactly, a party house is.

"A verified home has accurate photos, address information and listing details".

The fatal shooting that led to the enhanced safety measures occurred at a Halloween party held in an Airbnb rental in Orinda, which is a wealthy San Francisco suburb.

The site has instead relied on a reciprocal star-rating review system, which fraudulent hosts have reportedly abused by threatening tenants with poor ratings if they complain about misleading listings.

Last Thursday, a Vice News story revealed a scam by Airbnb hosts who put guests up at inferior properties after claiming the first ones weren't available.

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A refund policy will also be introduced next month, to ensure guests will either be re-booked into a different listing or fully refunded when a property does not meet Airbnb's standards for accuracy, Chesky said.

"I want to be clear - we are not infallible".

And on Tuesday, voters in Jersey City, New Jersey, approved restrictions on short-term rental companies in a referendum in one of Airbnb's most important markets.

- By December 31, Airbnb will launch a 24-hour hotline staffed by a rapid response team in the U.S. so neighbours, guests and others can report a problem.

Airbnb will now expand manual screening of high-risk reservations from December 15 to identify suspicious reservations and start a verification process for all the listings on its platforms, the company said. The company has also tapped Charles Ramsey, former chief of the Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. police departments, and Ronald Davis, the former chief of the East Palo Alto police department, to advise the projects.

Airbnb plans to go public in 2020, joining a series of tech companies that have made public stock offerings, with varying levels of success.

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