Organizations like Airbnb, which allows for people to lend their property to others for a fee, do have positive effects and help to drive innovation forward, the report claimed. However, there are many concerns such as privacy and consumer protection that should be considered.
Yeah, this is a privacy nightmare. Uber are just monopolising the taxi industry and infringing on privacy little by little https://t.co/0BL2XccKo5— Scar the Villain (@tumiatolagbe) 21 December 2016
According to the research the number of people using sharing platforms has increased significantly over the last four years and now one in four people say they have rented a house or borrowed a car or tools via websites that allow them to share items.
The problem arises however in how fair the sector is — there is no guarantee of a level playing field. For example a regular taxi firm maybe charging a higher price than Uber, which would eliminate them from the market.
Institute director Melanie Peters said that regulation is key in order to stop dominant players from monopolizing the market.
"We have to regulate them before they become too dominant in their sector. The report makes three main recommendations to the government. Firstly, the legal status of sharing platforms needs to clarify. Secondly, an independent regulator needs to be established to ensure the privacy of participants. And thirdly, the data collected by the platforms should be transferable," Ms. Peters said in a recent interview.
"Sharing platforms are data-driven and largely dependent on the data and the reviews of their users," Peters said. "We propose making sure that user can take their data with them to other platforms."