It's easy to never actually see the restaurant you're ordering from on Seamless, and restaurants are taking advantage of that. NBC 4 New York found that more than 10 of the 100 highest rated restaurants in New York City were fakes, in one way or another. In some cases, they were real restaurants that had created additional listings under new names to give themselves an edge within the app. Other listings, the report suggests, could even be operated out of a person's home. And still others came from food producers that weren't approved to sell straight to consumers.
Fake listings are problematic since it means that consumers have no way of looking up whether the restaurant they're ordering from is clean and cleared for business. In response to NBC's report, Seamless and GrubHub, which merged several years back, have issued a statement saying that they're working with New York's Department of Consumer Affairs "to address the issue and remove inaccuracies." It's also adding "more checks to validate the name and location of restaurants" before they're listed, which should help to prevent fakes in the first place. GrubHub tells The Verge that this issue is "unique to New York" and that it has removed all fake and unapproved restaurants identified by NBC.