An investigation by The Sunday Times has discovered that hotels and restaurants are drumming up business by posting glowing reviews of themselves.

In the course of the investigation it found:

- Proprietors describing hotels as “outstanding”, “excellent” and “charming” without declaring their interest in the business.

- Marketing executives to top British hotels recommending perks be offered to customers in return for a promise of a good review.

- Hotel star ratings on well-known websites that could be easily “ramped” with just a few e-mails from bogus customers.

The findings add to the concern about the unreliability of some online information. Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the British inventor of the world wide web, recently warned that the internet is in danger of being swamped by untrue and unfair statements.

Get the full story at the Times Online