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Amazon blocks accounts after discovering thousands of fake reviews

Date: 2021-05-19

Amazon.com recently blocked several prominent cross-border e-commerce merchants, including Aukey and Mpow.


Some foreign media reported on May 7 that the move by Amazon may be related to illegal and fake reviews.


According to reports, Safety Detectives, a foreign network security research organization, recently released a report on the leak of the swipe database.


The report shows that the database contains more than 13 million direct messages between suppliers and customers who are willing to provide fake reviews in exchange for free products. According to incomplete statistics, the number of buyers and sellers involved may exceed 200,000.


All the personal data of the people who provided the fake reviews and their related Amazon merchants can be found in the leaks. The data relating to the vendors included contact details, email addresses, and telephone numbers linked to WhatsApp and Telegram accounts used to communicate with reviewers. The data related to the fraudulent reviewers included their Amazon accounts and profiles, PayPal account details, email addresses, and usernames.


It is reported that the database server is located in China, but the owner of the ElasticSearch server cannot be identified at present.


The behavior of sellers buying fake reviews is strictly forbidden on Amazon. If discovered, they may face severe punishment.


Amazon can permanently shut down the stores of such sellers or cancel their category sales licenses.


Foreign media said that the 75,000 Amazon accounts involved in the issue may be permanently suspended, and sellers will immediately lose their sales privileges. These fake reviews will also be deleted from all product pages.


Some sellers have speculated that the reason Amazon has cracked down on dozens of popular Chinese merchants is that they have paid users for positive reviews of their products.


In addition, individuals who sell fake reviews may also be subject to legal sanctions. Fraudulent reviewers with thousands of fake comments may receive fines in excess of $10,000.


Some analysts believe that these occurrences among Amazon's super sellers may be just the beginning. The huge amount of data and sellers involved may lead to a wave of large-scale platform bans.


Amazon made an official statement in response to the issue a few days ago, saying that it will take action against non-compliance that affects customers and sellers to protect their legitimate rights and interests.


Amazon said that the platform has established corresponding systems and procedures to monitor suspicious behavior, and has also set up a dedicated team to investigate and take swift action. In response to violations of their rules, Amazon will quickly take measures such as suspending or revoking their sales rights.


Although e-commerce platforms have been severely cracking down on fake orders and reviews, many sellers still take the risk in hopes of increased profits.


After all, every seller knows the importance of reviews. It directly affects the transaction and conversion rate of products. All businesses use a variety of methods to obtain as many reviews as possible. Many Amazon sellers believe they can't succeed without brushing orders, especially in certain product categories.


Online technology giants such as Amazon are facing increasing pressure from the United States Competition and Markets Administration to take stronger action against fake comments on the platform. Amazon has also launched various measures to strictly control fake reviews.


Recently, Amazon introduced a flow-limiting mechanism in addition to blocking accounts found brushing orders, which may lead to a sharp decrease in their page views and sales.


One seller received an email notification of punishment from Amazon for fake reviews, which stated that the platform will limit traffic to the online store. The email was also sent to those sold under the corresponding ASIN.


Many sellers say that this is the first time they have received this kind of warning letter. Some said that Amazon sends such letter to warn sellers with few brushing orders or to those who are reported without exact evidence.


Some industry insiders believe that the flow-limiting mechanism may affect sellers who sacrifice their other accounts to promote their main products.


Amazon has been continually strengthening punishments for violations of brushing order. All sellers on the platform should follow the relevant laws and regulations.