Amazon Files Lawsuit Against Facebook Group Admins Over Fake Reviews

According to a report by TechCrunch, Amazon is suing the administrators of over 10,000 Facebook groups involved in posting fake product reviews on the e-commerce platform.

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Amazon notes that these groups recruited fake reviewers and operated in Amazon’s online storefronts in the U.S., the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Japan, and Italy.

One of these groups named ‘Amazon Product Review’ had over 40,000 members until Facebook removed it earlier this year. Amazon says it will “leverage the discovery process to “identify bad actors and remove fake reviews commissioned by these fraudsters.”

An earlier investigation by The Washington Post found that the majority of fake reviews could be seen on some specific product categories, including BlueTooth headphones and health supplements.

“We have seen an increasing trend of bad actors attempting to solicit fake reviews outside Amazon, particularly via social media services,” the company said last year.

Amazon said that it reported more than 1,000 review selling groups to social media platforms in the first quarter of 2021 — up threefold from the same period the prior year.

Whether that speaks to the prevalence of fake reviews or the online retailer taking the issue more seriously isn’t clear, but the company was keen to pass the blame onto social media companies for their lax enforcement of those groups when they violate platform rules.

Most of these groups are said to post rave reviews in exchange for money or other compensation.

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