Amazon sues Facebook group admin over fake reviews

Packages move along a conveyor belt at an Amazon fulfillment center on Cyber ​​Monday in Robbinsville, New Jersey, U.S., on Monday, November 29, 2021.

Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | beautiful pictures

Amazon on Tuesday submit a lawsuit against the administrators of more than 10,000 Facebook the groups allegedly acted as fake review brokers.

The lawsuit filed in King County Superior Court in Seattle alleges that administrators of the group solicited reviews of items in exchange for money or free products. One of the groups, “Amazon Product Reviews,” has more than 43,000 members and is said to have offered refunds or other payments to buyers willing to leave bogus reviews of products. products such as camera tripods and car stereos.

Another group, called “Amazon’s Diverse Buyers & Sellers,” has more than 2,500 members, the lawsuit says. The administrators allegedly searched for fake reviews and offered them to Amazon sellers, charging $10 per review, according to screenshots of Facebook messages included in the application. complain.

Facebook’s parent company Meta has taken down half of the more than 10,000 groups reported by Amazon and continues to investigate others, Amazon said.

This case represents Amazon’s latest attempt to remove fake reviews on its vast third-party market. The market now accounts for more than half of e-commerce sales and has helped the company bring in record revenue. But Fake reviews have become more serious because Amazon’s online marketplace has grown to attract millions of third-party sellers. The bad guys often seek to boost their product or search ratings by soliciting fake reviews.

It is not clear who is running the Facebook groups. Amazon said it filed a lawsuit to find out their identities, shut down groups and force them to return “illegal profits from brokering fake reviews,” according to the complaint.

Amazon says it has internal teams to look for people offering fake reviews. Groups work with Facebook to close groups. “However, new Facebook groups providing fake reviews continue to appear,” the complaint reads.

Many Facebook groups are private and require potential new members to provide proof that they are an Amazon seller or reviewer in order to be accepted. Posters often try to evade detection by Facebook moderators by obfuscating the phrase “Refund after review” and instead entering “R ** fund Aftr R ** vew”.

Amazon has previously said it uses a combination of machine learning tools and human moderators to try to curb fake reviews. It also requires other social media companies to step in and assist, as fake review communities have flourished in Facebook groups and in messaging apps like Telegram, WhatsApp and WeChat.

CLOCK: Amazon is flooded with fake reviews and it’s getting harder and harder to spot them

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