Published: Thu, September 20, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Amazon investigates claims staff sold customer data

Amazon investigates claims staff sold customer data

According to the WSJ report, it was not only Amazon's internal sales metrics and users' email addresses that were sold, also on offer was additional services.

The growing numbers of third party internet merchants sell a wide range of products by keeping the prices down. The opposite is the case with sellers with negative product reviews and ratings.

Reports of Amazon employees accepting bribes to delete negative customer reviews and leaking data are now being investigated.

Sellers can even contact brokers to get proprietary information on sales volume and data relating to shoppers' online spending habits in order to boost sales, the sources said.

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The employees are offered between US$80 and US$2,000 with the average rate for a deleted review at US$300.

The practice is a violation of company policy, as Amazon typically keeps this type of information under wraps. People who are supposedly familiar with the matter say that some of the incidents involve Amazon employees in the United States as well.

Following the report, Amazon said that it has "zero tolerance" for such abuses and that it was conducting a "thorough" investigation into the allegations. The communication transpire over Tencent-owned messaging platform WeChat, from which sellers bribed Amazon insiders, in lieu of data regarding their product listings.

They included that the organization would likewise take "quick activity" against dealers on its site who had "occupied with this conduct... counting ending their offering accounts, erasing surveys, withholding assets, and making a lawful move".

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Fake reviews by purported customers are among the concerns of the internal probe, the report said.

Amazon Inc. is looking into whether its employees are selling confidential data and using other tactics to inflate rankings for independent retailers.

Bribery in Tech companies is nothing new.

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Executives working in Shenzhen have been moved around in attempt to try and find out who is responsible for leaks.

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