Amazon has filed a lawsuit against the administrators of more than 10,000 Facebook groups. They would set up a stream of fake reviews, in exchange for money or free products. These groups were created to recruit people willing to post misleading reviews on Amazon stores in Italy as well as in the US, UK, Germany, France, Spain and Japan for reward. Amazon will use the information to remove fake reviews not yet detected by computer algorithms that monitor online posts in search of similar piloted content.
“Our teams block millions of suspicious reviews before they are seen by customers, and this lawsuit is another step towards unmasking the culprits operating on social media,” said Dharmesh Mehta, Amazon’s vice president of Selling Partner Services. “Proactive legal action against attackers is one of the many ways we protect customers by identifying them as responsible for illegal activities.”
The scammers behind these groups are demanding fake reviews for hundreds of products sold on Amazon, such as car stereos and camera tripods. One of the groups identified in the lawsuit is “Amazon Product Review,” which had over 43,000 members until, at the request of the e-commerce giant, Meta-Facebook eliminated the group earlier this year. Investigations revealed that group administrators attempted to hide their activity and evade Facebook’s detection, in part by obfuscating letters in problematic sentences. Amazon strictly prohibits fake reviews and employs more than 12,000 people worldwide dedicated to protecting customers, brands, sales partners, and the store from counterfeiting, fraud and other forms of abuse. A dedicated team investigates fake review schemes on social media, including Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter.