FAKE ‘LIKES’ CON BUYERS ON AMAZON
Testers paid to post reviews
AMAZON customers are being duped by fake reviews.
A probe found four and five star reviews on the website are sold for up to £13 each by rogue marketing firms and their armies of “testers”.
Fake reviewers buy the products to ensure Amazon classifies them as “Verified Purchases”, but are then given a fee and refund in return.
AMZTIGERs of Germany claims it has 3,000 UK and 60,000 Europe-wide testers.
It sells package deals of reviews, including 500 for €5,000 – the equivalent of £8.50 each. One worker told investigators the practice was “not really legal but not really unlegal”.
Last night Amazon said it had taken legal action against some firms and would continue to fight such activity.
It added: “Amazon is relentless in our efforts to protect the integrity of reviews.
“Our objective is to catch and remove abusive reviews before a customer ever sees it, and in the last month over 99% of the reviews read by customers were authentic.”
AMZTIGERs has been contacted for comment.
Earlier this year a survey by consumer watchdog Which? found 97% of shoppers relied on customer reviews to help make a purchase. As a result, millions of Amazon shoppers were at risk of being misled.
Natalie Hitchins from Which? said at the time: “It is vital that Amazon takes stronger action to ensure people can trust the information they see online and aren’t duped into buying poor quality products.”