Briefing: Consumer group accuses Fliggy, Ctrip of price optimization

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北京消协点名飞猪和去哪网涉嫌大数据杀熟 去哪网:不存在的 – iFeng

What happened: Some 88% of the Chinese consumers believe that online shopping platforms, including those for travel bookings and ride-hailing, leverage user data they collect for personalized pricing to make users pay as much as possible, according to a survey released by the Beijing Consumers Association on Wednesday. Around 57% of consumers interviewed say that they have experienced this phenomenon. Ctrip and Alibaba-backed Fliggy, two popular Chinese online travel aggregators, were among those suspected of this sort of price discrimination according to the survey. Both companies denied the allegations.

Why it’s important: Prevailing big data technology has substantially increased the ability of online retailers to apply selective pricing with more precision than ever before. In China, personal data is freely traded on the black market for meager sums. Prior to the current survey, tech giant Didi was also under attack for the same issue. A way to reduce unfair price boosting is to compare prices on multiple platforms and pay closer attention to personal data security, according to the survey.