Online shopping is a booming industry. In 2020, over two billion people purchased goods or services online, and during the same year, sales surpassed 4.2 trillion U.S. dollars worldwide. However, the number of fake product reviews is huge – and growing.
Reviews can make consumers much more likely to purchase a product. There are around 250 million reviews on Amazon, but large numbers are fake, including an estimated 61% of electronics reviews and 64% of supplements reviews.
When consumers spend money online and the product doesn’t live up to its reviews, this can cause a lot of disappointment, especially with higher-priced items.
In light of this, Amazon has announced its plans to address the issue of fake reviews by suing the administrators of approximately 10,000 Facebook groups dedicated to the practice.
Since 2020, Amazon says that it has reported over 10,000 review groups to Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram, over orchestrating large numbers of phony reviews of products.
Amazon also says that over half of these groups have now been taken down for violating Meta’s policies, while the others are currently under investigation.
Dealing with fake reviews
Amazon strictly prohibits fake reviews on its platform. The company says it currently employs over 12,000 people to protect against fraud, which includes investigating fake review schemes on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok.
According to Amazon, the owners of Facebook groups dedicated to selling fake reviews have recruited people willing to post misleading reviews on Amazon stores in the U.S., the U.K, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, and Japan in return for products and cash.
Dharmesh Mehta, Amazon’s vice president of Selling Partner Services said: “Our 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. Proactive legal action targeting bad actors is one of many ways we protect customers by holding bad actors accountable.”