Amazon reported over 10,000 fake review groups to Facebook-owner Meta since 2020.
Amazon is taking legal action against the admins of over 10,000 Facebook groups that it says facilitate fake reviews for products on its platform by promising money or free products in exchange for positive reviews. If the reviews of the last completely necessary and not at all superfluous thing you bought on Amazon looked like so much copypasta, there’s a good reason: Fake reviews abound and people are getting paid to post them.
The Seattle-based e-commerce giant said in a statement posted on its website that Facebook groups were set up to recruit people willing to post incentivized and operated in Amazon’s online storefronts in the U.S., the U.K., France, Germany, Spain, Japan, and Italy. Amazon, which in the suit described itself as a pioneer of product reviews, has dealt with bogus reviews for years. While the company has strict regulations around fake reviews. It called the issue of fake review trading an industry-wide problem, and there is a need for greater collaboration between the affected companies, social media sites, and law enforcement.
Amazon action against fake review groups:
The Amazon company says it has over 12,000 employees worldwide working to prevent fraud and abuse on its platform, which includes fake reviews, and says it’s reported over 10,000 fake review groups to Facebook-owner Meta since 2020. Meta has removed half of these groups and is investigating the others, Amazon said. The nefarious business of brokering fake reviews remains an industry-wide problem, and civil litigation is only one step.
The Amazon company named one group, “Amazon Product Review,” which boasted more than 40,000 members until Facebook removed it earlier in 2022. But it was able to dodge the platform’s detection by “changing letters in phrases that might set off Facebook’s alarms. Amazon said that it reported more than 1,000 review-selling groups to social media platforms in the first quarter of 2021. Amazon says it uses a combination of “advanced technology, expert investigators, and continuous monitoring” to detect fake reviews on its service.
Amazon teams stop millions of suspicious reviews before they’re ever seen by customers, and this lawsuit goes a step further to uncover perpetrators operating on social media. It will leverage the discovery process to “identify bad actors and remove fake reviews commissioned by these fraudsters. The company notes that past legal action it’s taken has been effective and “shut down multiple major review brokers. Proactive legal action targeting bad actors is one of many ways we protect customers by holding bad actors accountable. Amazon is calling for greater collaboration between organizations across both the public and private sectors to address the issue. Ultimately, fake reviews aren’t the worst kind of misleading content that internet companies are failing to eradicate.