Food delivery couriers and Airbnb ghost hotels: CBC’s Marketplace consumer cheat sheet

by - 3 min read

Food delivery couriers and Airbnb ghost hotels: CBC’s Marketplace consumer cheat sheet

by - 3 min read


Miss something this week? Don’t panic. CBC’s Marketplace rounds up the consumer and health news you need.

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Who protects the person delivering your food?

When you order dinner on a food delivery app, what happens if the bicycle courier bringing your food is injured on the way? In our investigation, we found that only some couriers in Ontario get compensation if they’re hurt, depending on which company they work for. Uber Eats now offers its own insurance and, following our questions, the Ontario WSIB will require the company to pay premiums for insurance coverage for its couriers.

Your Airbnb rental could be a ‘ghost hotel’

It’s a term for a listing that appears under a fake host profile, when it’s really managed by a company. What happens to homeowners who unknowingly rent out their apartments to businesses that turn around and list them on Airbnb? Neighbours get angry, but Airbnb says it can’t do much. In our investigation, we spoke with guests who were asked to lie and sneak around their Airbnb rentals.

Could your phone be seized at the border?

Coming back to Canada from a trip abroad? You might want to wipe your phone. A Canadian lawyer recently had his phone and laptop confiscated after he refused to tell border officers his passwords. The Canada Border Services Agency says it has the right to search electronic devices — just like it does with luggage. As for the lawyer, he’s still waiting to get his stuff back.

A Canadian border officer seized lawyer Nick Wright’s laptop and phone when he wouldn’t hand over his passwords. (submitted by Nick Wright)

Freedom Mobile customers, listen up

Has your data been stolen? If you opened or changed accounts with Freedom Mobile in late March to late April, your information may have been accessed by hackers. The company says about 15,000 customers may have been affected. That’s far less than 1.5 million customers which an external research firm originally estimated.

Wireless spectrum is the name for the invisible electromagnetic bands that allow wireless devices to talk to each other. (Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg)

What else is going on?

Is your “water-resistant” phone really covered for water damage? After dropping her phone into a toilet bowl, one Huawei customer was told by the company that she would have to pay for potentially costly repairs, or buy a new phone.— until CBC News aired this story.

Meat high roller Maple Leaf Foods jumps on the plant-based protein train. Companies big and small are investing in meat alternatives.

A new study finds that four in 10 cancer cases could be prevented. Not smoking, being physically active, maintaining a healthy weight, having a nutritious diet and practising sun safety were listed as the top preventative actions.

The week in recalls

This necklace set made by Great Pretenders contains lead and cadmium in excess of allowable limits; these Dom Reserve salmon strips could be contaminated with Listeria; these President’s Choice bottles of horseradish may contain glass fragments and these three-drawer chests by South Shore may tip over if not securely anchored to the wall, posing an entrapment hazard.

What should we investigate next?

Our television season has wrapped, but you can catch up on previous Marketplace investigations on CBC Gem. From scams, misleading marketing claims, to products and services that could put your health at risk, we are working on bringing you brand new investigations this fall. If you have a story you think we should be covering, email us at

This story originally appeared on CBC

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